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Academic Programs and Concentrations
Project Advisor 1
This Key Won’t Work
I like to play with objects that are thought of as mundane. Either I make mundane objects “un-mundane” by giving them deeper meaning, or I allow their mundaneness to become more conspicuous by putting the objects in extraordinary contexts or by giving them undue symbolic importance.
During the making of this project, I gravitated toward using symbolic or familiar imagery, and the inviting image of a house was a perfect candidate for a familiar image. That is why the subject of many of the drawings I made are houses--anyone can look at that shape with five sides and see a house, or a home, or at least something very familiar. I treat the subject like a word, one that changes when you repeat it, like saying a word over and over until it’s meaningless. But instead of stripping it of meaning completely, I let the repetition play out under changing circumstances until the subject’s meaning becomes muddy or confused, but always present.
A house starts as a house, it is familiar, but by placing it in different contexts, I start to forget what it means to be a house. Sometimes a house is scary, sometimes a house isn’t a house, and in some of my drawings, the houses serve as reliefs for the crowded space between them. These houses are closed off--none have doors or windows, and most are left without roads that would lead people to them. Each visitor to this show has a key that won’t work. It won’t open any of the houses and it won’t lead the visitor home. The key is only a false entryway into my exploration of this familiar and recognizable shape, a house.
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Waring, Grace Gordon, "This Key Won't Work" (2019). Senior Projects Spring 2019. 277.