home as material

I was thinking about how people buy and sell art they put in their homes. The artist makes the work in their studio and the art is in a complete and full state simply because it exists, regardless of the location it is in. Then the art is bought and moves from a studio to someone’s home. It becomes part of that new place, informing or decorating the space, and yet the space itself has done nothing to contribute to the making of that art object.  These artworks, which I call grafts shift this relationship around. The home becomes not merely a place where the artwork is displayed, but it becomes a part of the artwork itself. When an artist uses paper or clay, graphite or paint to make an artwork, they typically don’t consider the wall on which the artwork hangs as part of the artwork itself. In these graft artworks, that has changed. Any object, structure, or space already existent within the home is a material used in the making of the artwork. So the materials used to create a work can include aspects such as crown molding, an oven, stairwell or front door. Without such entities the artwork could not exist. At the same time, the artist’s hand must come in and alter that space, object or structure in some way so as to create art both from the existing home and their own vision. Both the artist and the dwelling space contribute to the creating of a grafted site-specific artwork.