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(City of Nine Gates)
2018 Art series

My latest art series is about being the “proud citizen”.  The ideas we have about citizenship and patriotism.

I refer to the body as a city in this series, as it is the temporary residence of the soul.

The nine gates: the orifices that provide entrance and exit for the body. 

The eyes, nostrils, mouth, ears and genitals and the anus.

(This portrait series is focused on 7 of the 9 gates specifically.)   

I thought about how incredibly attached we are to our citizenships.  The idea of belonging.  Our ideas of ownership in regards to our cities, and states, and nations.

The notion of our home teams being champions of anything, bring such a sense of pride.  A sense that we are in some way affiliated with greatness.  We sell MVP jerseys and plaster champions across billboards as confirmation that WE are the greatest.

These ideas are so subtly potent that they keep us in a constant state of comparison.  The moment we pledge these subconscious allegiances, we immediately take personal stake in the success of our “homes”. 

We fight over things that do not belong to us.  We claim things that are not us.  We become iPhone people, or Samsung people, or BMW guys or Chanel girls.   We become American. 

We become black or white. 

In that state, we take ownership of these temporary designations and differentiate ourselves from one another. 

That isn’t us though.

We live in these bodies and pay constant attention to every detail in relation to them, but these bodies are not who we are any more than the driver of a bus IS a bus.

What happens when we move?

We have to move out eventually. …right?

This art series is an ongoing exercise for me to see and treat people as if they are more than their bodies.  To LOVE beyond these externals. It’s an encouragement to all of my friends to love the citizens regardless of their homes.