Faces of 2020 #1
This collage is part of a series of portraits about people impacted by the pandemic, especially folks from marginalized communities who have experienced the most devastation. 2020 was one of my most prolific art years, with over 300 works created. I stopped traveling in early March 2020, when the shelter-in-place orders began, and remained mostly in California for the remainder of the year. This meant that I had more spaciousness to experiment and create in a more deliberate way. For these portraits, I began with a selection of cutouts of noses, lips, eyes and hands that had been printed via linoleum block. I created a container in which I could remix the elements of faces and tell a different story through each piece. As my experiment evolved, I became more creative with each of the facial structures, as well as the clothing and accessories. It was a playful space for me to try out new ideas.
When I'm working on art, I'm usually listening to news podcasts about the incidents that are happening throughout the United States and in the world, and connecting to the stories of impacted people. Much of that energy emerges in my prints. Through these works, my intent was to show the resilience and humanity of people, as we have been spatially separated during the pandemic. While we have less physical human contact, it's critical that we hear each other's stories and channel our empathy into real action for social change.