Chosen Family, Chosen Name, Separatist, Safe Space, Expat, Invert, Homophile, Homestead

This work’s title is an assemblage of diverse strategies and terms that LGBT and other marginalized people have used over generations to mark the labor of making and naming home. Sca olding operates here as a material metaphor for social constructions broadly. Cordial glasses further call to mind shared spaces where people come together to socialize. Ribboned text from the laser-cut marquetry bar top pro- nounces “We Must Take Ecstasy,” citing the conclusion of queer theorist José Esteban Muñoz’s nal book Cruising Utopia, in which the operative word is “Take” and the obligation of the communal “We” is to actively construct for ourselves a commitment to ecstatic expe- rience as a tool to work towards a utopic future.

laser marquetry, poplar bar rail, plywood, lumber, sca old, cordial glasses, velvet dress, velvet stanchions, coasters 54”h x 42”w x 120”l

Apparatus for a Dream Sequence

The massage table platform of Apparatus for a Dream Sequence offers up the prospect of respite and restoration in a moment when so many of our bodies are conscripted into reactive and defensive work.  Its scoreboard-styled blanket eschews the possibility of  recording the progress towards winning or losing - instead its text: “PUBLIC” vs. “PRIVATE,” “SOFT”/ “STRIKE”/ “OUT” and “BUTCH” at bat suggest a queer model of play apart from the constrictions of even normative game space.  The vintage table reaches back to an earlier moment in time, as the elongated typesetting of “DREAMSEQUENCE” conjures a stretched and extended marking of time.  Using design in the service of a kind of prefigurative politics, this work pitches a structure to facilitate utopic dream space, recognizing that the labor of anticipating and laying the groundwork for dreaming requires its own particular tools and commitment.

wool, massage table

“I have nothing to declare except my genius,” said Oscar Wilde to the customs agent.

Fig leaves, designed to cover, but always accentuating, reference not just the monumentality of the sculptures to which they were meant to conform, but also the power made visible in the occupation of space and the expenditure of resources to render such gestures. Phallic associations with power and genius are not easily critiqued without provoking essentialist accusations of envy. This rhetorical camouflage does not obscure that the nature of what is objectionably lacking is rooted elsewhere, namely in the representation of certain bodies and cultures, which are instead obscured entirely from public veneration. Concurrently, the complex politics of exposure prompt recognition of the violence in defoliation. This is especially so at a moment in which “biological sex” is perverted to mean not the range of biological diversity in regards to a spectrum of sexual characteristics, but rather an immutable, “true,” and binary classification that has the effect of an invasive cis-sexist kudzu. In such a moment, armor that is both affective and made of metal may be necessary. The affective shield of the title’s camp pomposity romanticizes material lack while asserting what Wilde claimed as his natural intellectual primacy. That the anecdote that contextualizes this quote is sited at a policed border resonates as much conceptually as it does bureaucratically. This series of bronze leaves are, in the tradition of the boy band, exhibited in groups varying in number, and occasionally singularly in a breakout role. Consider the work a dick joke in the style of Margaret Atwood’s classic zinger: “Men are afraid that women will laugh at them. Women are afraid that men will kill them.”