A Portable Homeland is a work in progress. I just took this map from the Inscape building back to my studio where I plan to create another two to three feet of territory before showing it again in May/June in the A Gallery in Pioneer Square. The opening will be on May 3rd, 5-8pm.
To prepare for the installation at Inscape, I began reading about the history of the Inscape building on the website. The building was originally built by the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) in the early 1900's to process immigrants entering into Seattle and to detain up to 750 people at a time who would not be allowed to enter the United States. In 2008 the building was renovated and converted into artist studio spaces. I began thinking about my own family's experience of immigrating to America in the early 1900's and being processed at an immigration center on Ellis Island, NY. But what particularly resonated with me on the website was a definition of the word "inscape":
Inscape. noun [in’ska¯p’] The essential, distinctive, and revelatory quality of a person, place or object; the distinctive, dynamic design that constitutes individual identity, especially as expressed in artistic work.
For my installation, A Portable Homeland, I use the imagery of a map, unscrolled on a table, to explore my inscape, or internal landscape of time, place, and spirituality. A place "beginningless and boundless"; a time "between what was and what will be"; a "mysterious unknown".
photo credit: corvophoto.com