This print is one in a body of works that are about friendship and intimacy. One of my biggest takeaways from 2020 was the importance of developing intimate bonds with my friends. Like most people, I was conditioned by society to believe that intimacy is reserved for romantic couples. Yet the pandemic forced me to explore how I could achieve deep intimacy and vulnerability through my friendships. The isolation that many of us experienced during the pandemic had a big influence on my behavior. I realized that as a self partnered woman, I longed for attention and intimacy in a way that I had not in the past. In the past, I had been incredibly busy and flying around the country, moving at an unrealistic and inhumane speed, and that numbed me and satisfied me in the short term. Meeting lots of new people all the time somehow quenched some of my need for human connection, yet there was rarely depth and vulnerability.
But COVID changed all of that. And I shifted to instead creating tighter bonds with my friends and working towards deep intimacy. I adapted my behaviors in order to be more vulnerable with my friends, to have space for connection, grief, repair, attention and healing. These collages represent that depth of exploration.
These works also marked a new approach to how I composed my figures. In 2019, I created a series of work called Feminist Word Collages, which were pieces that blended my two foundational practices: social justice posters and collage. They incorporated words as political statements and blended them with my stylized figures. This new series, however, takes that combination to a new level as the compositions are more detailed and reflect an evolution in my aesthetic that is the result of me deeply focusing on my art throughout 2020. I developed a new language as a result of isolation, a new approach to my patterns and my shapes, and gained more mastery of my color palette.