Swan Lake is a project that continues where the Swan Song exhibit left off in 2017: photos of a shattered porcelain bowl reflected the death of my grandmother, her dying process and our parting.
For this exhibit I have collected whole dishes of white pottery and porcelain from friends and strangers in order to create open shelving that stands whole for only a short time. It is complete, neat, fixed, frozen in time, until human activity arrives to change, disturb, dismantle and complicate the space.
Visitors are invited to choose an item and break it, a process that empties the open shelving of its perfect objects while the floor fills with fragments. Each object has a story that shatters into pieces and is interspersed with the others. Visitors arrive at different stages of the emptying of the shelving and the mounting pile of shards on the floor, and experience the space differently.
The shards tell a story of layers upon layers. As in any place where new people arrive and build a new home, adding to and also wearing the space down, the broken pieces create a new floor out of the older ones. Some people are aware of where they step, of the history, of the place where they walk and some are not. Some people do not participate in breaking the pottery. Some watch from the side.