The Tree House
The Tree House | Gouache, silver and copper line drawing on paper | 23x30 inches | 2019-2022
Running across five panels are five houses each a home to a willow tree. The tree inside the house is growing within its confines of the structure, almost shaped by its walls. The triangular, white roof is painted with two white pigments, titanium and lead, over which vertical lines- evoking the warp of an unfinished carpet- are drawn with copper and silver points, causing the drawing to constantly tarnish, transform and destabilize. Stability lays beyond the fragile roof in the bright colors that form the background
Through this work I investigate what Arundhati Roy questions, what happens when imagination is bombarded and colonized before it even begins to imagine? I suppose it begins to symbolize a fragile structure, hopelessly unable to sustain itself, constantly tarnishing, constantly eroding. What happens when the walls that are supposed to screen and serve as a space for growth are in fact confining, limiting? What happens when a roof that must be a stable structure, capable to shelter and protect its dwellers is actively eroding and tarnishing? The white roof in the painting is in a constant state of tarnishing; an effect I achieve by using techniques used by European masters, known as silver point drawings, on white pigments such as lead, titanium and zinc. This effect at one level signals incarcerated minds that are colonized even before they start thinking, on the other a crumbling architecture of corporatized pedagogy.