magnetic sleep: statement

My work is often concerned with issues of translation, imaginary landscapes, exploration, and loss, seen through the lens of now-obscure historical phenomena. My current projects are inspired by research into 19th century spirit photography, parapsychology, and Spiritualism- the belief that the human personality continues to exist after death and can communicate with the living through the agency of a medium.

A deeply American product, and one of the formative sources of the New Age movement, Spiritualism was born in the dimly lit parlors of the 1850's. It was a conflicted response to a cultural environment eerily similar to our own: a newly powerful mass media, rife with news of war; dizzying accelerations in technology and industry; an uprooted, mobile population; the seemingly inexorable advance of scientific achievement (especially explanatory theories of evolution and geology); and a perceived decline in fundamental religious values.

This new multi-media work focuses on the sometimes humorous paradox of a homespun, unorthodox mysticism that addressed itself to an establishment concerned with experiments, proofs, and documentation; a trance-eyed, spirit-channeling movement that nevertheless courted men of science, and found inspiration in the metaphysical possibilities of the newest communication technology.