My identity has been defined by a life-long experience of exile. As the daughter of a Russian mother and Cherokee/Irish father, both at odds and in denial of each other’s heritage, my self-definition is a process of fluidity, tension, and mystery. Surviving an adolescence of violence and homelessness, my saving grace was my ability to transmutate abjectness into power, coupled with a frank awareness of the impermanence of all things. This is the main tenet of my creative work.
Having found New Orleans a suitably fluid environment to call home (an ironic tension not lost on me), I have lived here for 14 years. Photography, painting, drawing, sculpture, as well as creative and critical writing inform my work in process-oriented installations. Out of a frustration with the limitations of formal art-making procedures and a compulsion to make work that will address issues –vs- describe them, my current work includes organizing community-based, site-specific work in areas recovering from disaster with my project “Art In Action”. In this way I consistently address issues of impermanence, exile, and individual/collective responsibility while also promoting the creative process as a valid method for recovering from trauma and cultivating an intimate, vital connection to the world.