My current body of prints takes a derivative of the original cinemascope format to specify the size of the etching plates. Widescreen format is all around us in our daily lives. It has become an acceptable way in which we view the world’s problems on our phones, TVs and computers all the while managing to stay uninvolved. The format is a familiar frame in the technological world that I utilize to present my imagery. The aim is that a once familiar looking presentation format can bring about a different awareness of the imagery that is being depicted.
This body of work consists of a social issue that is autobiographical. I have begun to explore both historically and figuratively the violence in minors specifically school shootings. Youth violence is a demographic that people have become desensitized about. My past experience with violence determines how I now view the demographic. All of this comes to a head in my memories when I reflect on my senior year in high school in 2003. That year my high school was victim to three bomb threats and ultimately a school shooting. A 14-year-old boy entered the school in the morning and opened fire killing the principal and himself. My goal is through my personal experiences my audience gains an awareness of the epidemic. As awareness grows the hope is that the conversations can come in a preventative approach rather than reflection of an incident that has befallen. My hope is that an audience can begin to allow their perception of who constitutes as a victim to shift. My work pushes back against those who chose to tell me who a victim is and who is not one. It challenges the nature in which we dismiss an act of violence based on the factors that surround it. Are video games to blame, were the parents neglectful, was the child bullied or are the problems deeper than all of those?
A victim . . . the most important component of my story is a victim. Who decides who qualifies to be called a victim if we take that decision from the media? If I told you a fourteen-year old boy died in a shooting would you call him a victim? If I told you that same boy was a shooter and took other lives would you still call him a victim? In my story he is one in the same and remains a victim throughout . . .