The Divining Series
Taking a phenomenological approach, The Divining Series, and the three years of research that generated it, asks after the meeting place between the metaphysical, the divine, and the singular Self. To better pose my questions, I created vignettes and installations that were enlivened by performative action, articulating a desire for a feminist spiritual life. Repetition to the point of discomfort and pain within these vignettes begged questions of care and the nature of flourishing and suffering. Through performance, I embodied and referenced archetypes of the ancient world, of Christendom, and Western art history; inhabiting the murky territory between devotional practice and performative acts. With ceramic tile, I created terrain for those performances to unfold on, echoing designs found in houses of worship. These works were a gesture towards womxn who have sought repetitive, soul-building work to expand their interior lives long before I ever did. I endeavored to draw a correlation between my performative actions and the religious practices they may have pursued to subvert and obtain relief from the suffering in their own micro and macrocosm. These distilled, highly-stylized spaces and actions are small offerings and references to my foremothers, acknowledging that the sorrow found in the daily life is not new. It is just new to me. I am one of many who have stood at the edge of the river Styx; loomed at the maw of the cathedral. I hold hands with virgin saints and lusty goddesses, in equal measure.