June 1 – July 9, 2000
trace is a synthesis of my reflection on the origins and consequences of our biases, and my examination of how our histories inform identity.
In trace, I see the mouth as a border between interior and exterior, and focus as a containment (whether social or cultural); an ordering into which most people do not fit.
In this work, teeth serve as a familiar image that evokes the individual while implying a sense of commonality. In the first element of trace I use the image of the whole tooth. The root is exposed, suggesting growth and origin—the hidden and historical. In this extracted state it reminds us of absence through its very presence.
In the second element, the bite-marks imply a paradox—each one identifies an individual, yet tells us virtually nothing about that person. The accompanying plaster blocks detailing biographical birthplaces, add another dimension. Faced with two sets of similarly numbered objects, the assumption is that they correlate, but in fact they do not. In the third element, the viewer is invited to create his or her own self-identifying bite-mark piece and display it on the structure provided.