Michelle Martin


Tulsa, OK

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Mystorical Constructions

This new series is primarily rooted in social/historical commentary, but experiments with non-linear narratives and the use of pre-existing source imagery. Drawing on varied sources from the Old Masters to popular imagery—from Albrecht Durer to Victorian clip art—I create seamless prints that belie their heterogeneous origins. This process is, as I see it, a form of “image sustainability,” a recycling of past imagery into new forms that combine digital technologies with hand-made processes of serigraphy, etching, relief, sewing, and chine-collé. The resulting prints, titled Mystorical Constructions, have prompted viewers to wonder not just how they were made, but when—are they historical artifacts or contemporary fictions? Both monumental and intimate in scale, the historic images I re-purpose are deliberately seductive. They prompt in viewers a nostalgia for fairy tales and whimsical stories, and yet they also generate disquieting and open-ended narratives,