Rachel Perry Welty
When I was in New York over the holidays, I had a chance to see some wonderful exhibitions which I will feature this week. Rachel Perry Welty has an interesting exhibition at the Yancey Richardson Gallery in Chelsea that runs through December 23rd, 2010. A late photographic bloomer, Rachel came to the art world after a career as an art director and hasn’t looked back. She exhibits widely as an artist who uses photography, sculpture, social media, and installations to create her work.
The exhibition, Lost in My Life, presents a series of photographs of herself subsumed by the discarded minutia of consumer culture. Part performance, part installation, Welty immerses herself in environments built entirely from familiar, leftover consumer materials: Bread tags, price stickers, aluminum foil, twist ties, cardboard boxes, and Styrofoam. Significantly. Significantly, Welty is in every image, though she never reveals her face, emphasizing the dichotomy between personal identity and the anonymity of consumer habits.
“I’m just the kind of person who notices the things that other people don’t,” she explained. “This is my life. I’m a mother, a wife and I’m in the kitchen a lot, the heart or the center of the house. That sounds so corny, but I spent a lot of time in the kitchen and naturally gravitated towards the materials that were around me. “
The world may be going “green,” but Welty said her work is not about recycling. “It’s the small moments that form the ballast of our lives,” she said. “Most of our lives are not these high-highs and low-lows. Most people are just involved in the business of living. And I’m interested in that.”
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