CV & Artist Statement

Artist Statement

Issues of personal identity seem to have become increasingly complex and critical in the realm of contemporary culture.  Who we are and how we identify ourselves is of fundamental importance. These questions of self-definition have been a primary preoccupation of many contemporary artists and art currently being produced reflects significant concerns and developments in establishing one’s individuality in the diversity in which we live. The notion of analyzing individual identity as it merges with cultural identity and self is being put to question. “Self” who’s meaning is paradoxical in the sense that it means both sameness and distinctiveness. These contradictions multiply especially when it is applied to women and specifically to ethnically diverse women living in the United States. My lens for my art making exploration is that of an Armenian American female. I believe that it is important to include my position as both insider and outsider, not just artist and academician, but as Easterner/Westerner, traditional/modern, and foreign/local, which gives me a broader sphere to a more critical and reflexive approach. My art is a study; to what extent is “self” a descriptive feature of cultural experience? And how do the regulatory practices that preside over gender also preside over culturally understandable notions of identity? The structuring principles of intentionality behind image and thought, emphasized in my explorations, tend to have various levels of sight, from the possible subconscious or from pre-intentionality of the artist to the calculated subject of commodity relations and inequalities of power that shape the way we perceive what we see.