The artists of this show exemplify the idea of design and construction through the theater of surprise and the unexpected. They speak about regional and global issues of family, addiction, technology and agriculture in an intimate and personal manner and turn the concerns of identity and the accompanying sociopolitical effects into a collective response and experience. The act of creation and process in these works provoke curiosity in a manner which should delight the viewer. Bold and attractive with an astonishingly unique expression – these artists redefine how we perceive what is before us.
I am interested in exploring the links between biology and culture, the present and the primordial, the personal and the universal.
My principal strategies are, the transformation of common objects into other recognizable objects, extreme scale shifts, and the juxtaposition of disparate materials and images.
I have converted items from the home into landscapes or sites of natural and industrial processes to show the interaction of nature, culture, and origins, and constructed models of internal organs from common materials to position these connections within the body.
The body and the home are major themes. Because we understand the world through our bodies, it is the starting point. The home is an extension of our bodies and is the primary source for the production and propagation of culture.
Using architecture as a raw material, I often carve into walls to retrieve material needed to build other objects. It is a means to make literal connections between the architecture and the resulting object or to reveal aspects of their respective natures. What interests me about architecture is its constructed nature, that it is built primarily for the human body, and that it can be a potent stand-in for “the institution” whether it is the home, the gallery, or the museum.
Recently, I have been exploring agriculture and astronomy (cosmology.) Both are instances when we actively interact with nature and our origins. The origin of civilization stems from the advent of agriculture and astronomy actively probes space in the search for the beginnings of the universe.
Although it is not my main goal, using agricultural imagery positions the rural experience as something equally as interesting, important, and complex as the urban. An exploration (embrace) of my own roots is both part of that desire and a mode of inquiry.
My work has taken the form of paintings, drawings, and installation. A lot of my recent work draws from my children and our domestic life as a way to speak to broader collective experience. I’m specifically interested in the ways children assign meaning to things, and the ways they use placement and proximity to build narrative and create relationships between disparate objects and ideas.
Many of my pieces over the last several years start with found poems constructed from recorded conversations between my sons. These exchanges usually center around some kind of make believe battle or conflict. They are surprisingly funny and dark. I’m often taken aback by their seeming relevance to current events. The poems become a framework for building the images sequences. These sequences are sometimes paintings, constructions, sculptures and installations.
“My modest proposal is that looking at this work might possibly make you feel better,” Amado says. “The candy colors are similar to the ones used by the pharmaceutical industry. Circles are generally pretty calming, evoking the earth, sun and moon. Felt is an ancient material, soft and sensual to the touch. I don’t have all the answers, but I think this placebo works pretty well. It definitely made me feel a lot better while I was working on it.”