“Cut” is an installation and performance piece. In the installation, long lines of VHS tape stream from the ceiling into a pile on the ground. The work begins with me seated at the base of the sculpture. I immediately begin ripping the VHS tape off the spindles while singing a hymn from childhood. I grabbed random lines and cut out portions of them, then taped these sliced sections back together while whispering “I love you,” muffled by the sound of TV static that filled the room. After unwinding about three or four rolls of tape, the suspended sculpture fell on me as I continued to rip apart the fourteen spindles that remained. The sculpture falling was not planned. Also, I accidentally hit my friend who was sitting behind me while I performed with the spindle from the VHS tape but he was calm about it lol.
This work is based on a traumatic experience of mine when I was ten years old. My father had me go back into our home movies and cut out all the scenes of my deceased mother due to my stepmother’s jealousy. In one scene within these home movies, my mother looks tired while she drapes herself on a couch where my brother and I are playing. She turns toward the camera, but looks past the viewer, to who is holding the recorder (my father) and smiles gently. Her eyes are dazed (and probably sleep deprived from watching us) but still carry a light that shines toward him as she mouths “I love you.” And from that, I ejected the video, cutting out the few minutes of radiance, editing the memory out of our family history. This performance is a representation of this moment and is an apology to her. I dedicate my art and love to her and the discussion of this work will leave this sour time, and others like it, behind for me.