JEREMY COLEMAN SMITH

ARTIST STATEMENT

 

My work addresses the histories of collecting and displaying objects in a domestic setting. The home is where individuals have control of their environment and approach its interior as an arena for adornment, reflection, or as a personal museum. I am intrigued by the way people exhibit their possessions, curious of the placement and meaning, and suspicious of their validity. These trophies or totems are transformed from common utility to objects of desire. The presentation of these objects fabricates an image of the occupant and becomes a depiction of self-narrative. The relationship between the object and its possessor becomes entangled; the memory of the self becomes replaced by the memory of the object and leaves one to question which is ultimately the curiosity? 

 

The materials that I use are overlooked and are considered to have little or no value. The surface and form of these objects have separate histories, but come together to have a combined existence in the context of this display. By applying my experience with craft to materials commonly dismissed as disposable, such as cardboard, these materials lose their insignificance, suggest the elegance of others and appear to be ready-made. By relying on the power of the original, the representation assumes that character or value through this process of mimesis.

 

Sentimentality develops into a need or desire that must be sustained or reinforced by the presence of objects. My work questions what we cherish more, the image of the object, the idea of the experience or the object itself? I believe that the desire for nostalgia can be satisfied through multiple sources, but how one displays or expresses this satisfaction is what my work explores. 

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