ARTIST STATEMENT

Much of my current work emerges from a place of simultaneous enchantment with and concern about the dominance of the screen and its myriad forms of digital mediation in my daily life experiences. My eyes are seduced, mesmerized even, by the luring light of such phosphorous radiation. Time and space explode into millions of pixels. A virtual nirvana. As I watch the television screen, the computer screen, the movie screen, the i-pod screen, the cell-phone screen… I often forget that I am. Here. Now. This sense of 'coming unhinged' from real time and space raises many questions for me.

I am interested in how the digital interface affects and redirects the ways in which we interact with eachother, with the environment, and how we negotiate a growing parallel existence in reality and virtuality. My dialogue with these ideas crystallizes into visual metaphors through a variety of mediums including photography, painting, mixed media sculpture, and performance.

"Embodiment can be destroyed but it cannot be replicated. Once the specific form constituting it is gone, no amount of massaging data will bring it back. This observation is as true of the planet as it is of an individual life-form. As we rush to explore the new vistas that cyberspace has made available for colonization, let us also remember the fragility of a material world that cannot be replaced."

From "Virtual Bodies & Flickering Signifiers" by N. Katherine Hayles

© 2008 helma sawatzky – updated in june 2010