Maneras de (co)ser

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This work makes manifest the invisible fabrication of identity through experience and custom.  I have stitched photographs taken in what can be considered my hometown in Costa Rica onto the “skin” of a mannequin, as a gesture mimetic of how the culture and ways of being of that place have been grafted onto my identity, integrating indelibly into my being, but ever remaining an aggregate, no matter how permanently affixed.

Exhibited as part of Lacuna in the Elzay Gallery of Art at Ohio Northern University, January, 2017

35mm/digital archival prints on canvas, mannequin, thread, January 2017

Vested

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I was issued my first passport at four months of age. My passport has always been for me a treasured item.  It is your life abroad, and must be closely guarded; it grants freedom and protection.  It is also for me a small diary, a record of my travels and a timeline of my life.  It has become the consummate symbol of my citizenship, and a marker of where I (should) belong.

This project considers citizenship and the obligation of legal belonging as analogous to clothing; each providing similar freedoms and limitations.  Clothing protects yet restricts, and serves to identify.  It is requisite to being granted permission to enter the public sphere in the same way that proof of identity and citizenship is requisite to enter the global sphere.  My legal status places me in the U.S., but my heart places me in Costa Rica where I grew up, and the two are ever at odds with one another within me.  I have constructed this dress out of the pages of my passports in the style of the traditional Costa Rican attire to reflect this inner incongruity.  It is beautiful and imperfect, pleasing and dissatisfying all at once.

Exhibited as part of Lacuna in the Elzay Gallery of Art at Ohio Northern University, January, 2017

Satin, cotton, denim. January 2017

Cultural Identity

This work is part of an exploration into myself and some of the experiences which have been foundational forces in forming my character and my identity.  The early half of my childhood I spent in my native home of California, and the latter half was spent in Costa Rica, when my family relocated there.  This work deals with the experience of belonging to two cultures simultaneously, yet not completely belonging to either, and my experience of trying to locate myself somewhere between the two.

Corpus Residentia

Mat board, wood, plaster, wax, video. October, 2014. 

Corpus Residentia is a sculpture/installation which deals with the theme of one’s body as Other than oneself: of the body as residence.

 

There is an incredible intimacy between oneself and one’s body.  When the Self leaves the body, its existence in this physical world ceases. Our bodies are our vehicles for worldly existence, but they are similarly and conversely our very mortality.  Our deep-seated consciousness of the eventual termination of our physical existence creates a separation between ourselves and our bodies. A body is not to be trusted: it will eventually betray its owner, yet a high level of partnership must exist between a body and its wearer in order to function.

Corpus Residentia is a manifestation of this conflict, representing the body as a domicile in which one dwells: a place of comfort dearly held–a space of which one acquires an intimate knowledge and attachment, yet from which there is always a separation. It is a space one can inhabit, but never become.

 

Cuestionemos

Questionemos is a photo-based installation which was born from my personal research into wind turbines upon becoming aware of a wind energy generation plant proposed for my hometown, and throughout the following years resisting the project.

 

Before there existed the possibility that these machines would be built just up the road from my family home, I had little knowledge about them.  My perception of a wind turbine was typical: I saw them as clean sleek stewards of the environment, providing natural, clean energy to those in need.

 

 

After researching on the subject, I became aware of the dark side of the wind energy industry.  The turbines are hazardous to human health due to the low-frequency vibrations that they emit and the noise disturbance they cause; they are hazardous to wildlife; and they are detrimental to property values in the surrounding areas.  They are costly and inefficient, and the motivations for installing them are often driven by political or financial motivations rather than their actual potential for energy production, which is minimal.  The residents of the communities where the turbines are installed are under-informed, under-compensated, made promises which aren’t kept, and often disregarded completely.

 

 

Questionemos (Let Us Question) aims to bring these issues to light, as they are seldom known outside of communities neighboring “wind farms”, and asks the viewers to question the image of the wind turbine that is sold to them regularly through media and advertising.  The installation deals with text and imagery, and the covering-up of the truth for which both are used in regards to the wind energy industry.  The installation also contains a video which incorporates the monstrous noise made by the turbines.

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Intrecciare

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© 2018 Radha Rose Tague.  All rights reserved.

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