I tend to be drawn towards a negative, even backwards way of seeing things; a wrong way of looking. I rely on conceptual strategies and the indexical nature of photography to help me observe a version of the everyday that exists just beneath consciousness, otherwise visible only out of the corner of my eye.
My process typically starts with ordinary experiences and found objects. Simple moments sometimes stand out and demand focused attention. Found objects can become imbued with meaning by turning them inside out, melting them, or just dropping them on the floor; impulsive, ephemeral acts that seek to reverse, reveal, or twist. Wedging my camera lens underneath the furniture in my home to capture the undersides of things or cutting holes in bottles and containers so that I can photograph their interiors; these are gestures of exploration, as well as introspection.
All of my projects are based upon a conceptual process; repeated acts that lead to discovered images. This happens most literally in Underneath, an ongoing series of photographs I’ve created by inserting my camera into the nooks and crannies that surround the spaces where I live and work. This act is exemplary of my process, in that I give up control of the camera, literally relinquishing it while the images are created so that I can see the world from a place I could never physically occupy.
My series of Sliced Fruit began with a commonplace moment – dropping a piece of freshly sliced fruit on the floor. I found myself captivated by the sharp and sudden moment when something of value is ruined. Dust balls, flecks of dirt, chunks of cat litter and wisps of hair cling to the surface of fresh cut pomegranate, grapefruit, and kiwi, and yet at the same time that dirtiness permeates the fruit through and through.
I find that my work is most interesting when it surprises me, particularly as it has in my Interiors, photographs of the insides of household containers. Looking into these bottles, boxes and bags always seems to reveal something utterly foreign; the inside of lotion bottle becomes clouds or snow, while the inside of a pumice soap container is reminiscent of a sewer. In the printing process these spaces also make the shift from tiny, private spaces to sublime, public spaces.
Yet the central theme here is not of transformation, but of surface versus depth and interior versus exterior. In the Interiors, it’s the concrete identity (the labeling, logos and barcodes) that becomes hidden, only to bleed back through, backwards and abstracted.
The inside is a privileged space, apart from surface where we look for deeper meaning. Photography offers so many great powers: the simple act of seeing becomes experience and knowledge. I find myself drawn to uncertainty, reversals, and inversions; to see things as they are not meant to be; to stare directly at the parts of my surroundings which must remain out of focus.