HOW SHALL WE THEN LIVE?
10' x 8' x 8'". Florida Legislation, wood, bronze, textiles, motor, with audio. 2024
How Shall We Then Live? is designed to explore the truths that we believe unquestioningly from childhood that later are revealed to be untruths — but not before first impacting individual development. This work considers the space between the true and the imagined true as a place where meaning can be made and challenged without meeting as much resistance. There are three key elements in How Shall We Then Live?: the sensory play mat installed on the floor; an audio element that invokes bed-time stories as a means to reconsider childhood beliefs; and a large-scale orbiting mobile with hanging papier mâché forms. These hollo forms work on several levels: simply they are objects - toys associated with childhood. The disjointed text scarecely legible over a hollow form is a metaphor for the superficiality and danger of normalizing certain constructs - fundamentally empty. The papier mâché is made of hand-torn Florida legislation enacted in the last year to impose further restrictions on the state’s educational system. This work emphasizes most specifically the context of Florida’s political and cultural environment, but more broadly it’s intended to serve as a reminder to continue to question the narratives put forward by the power systems around us, whether these are intimate and personal, political, religious, or something else entirely. Once these have been acknowledged, what do we do with this new awareness? How shall we then live?