Stroke Hold (2013)
inkjet print
9 x 6 in.

In times of fear, in the face of rage, we look for anchor points. I am the survivor of a road rage. Almost a decade ago I was disabled after being crushed under a car as I walked on a sidewalk. I have worked with fear as a theme in my artwork since (2012) . For us all, NOW we should fear. For so many humans right now, both in body, in asylum, in terms of basic freedoms, danger zooms past just as cars do as speeding bullets.

In symbol and service of resilience, I rescue traffic cones and barrels who were abandoned to rot in a median, tossed asunder in a tar field, or dragged under a truck on an interstate. Each has its own story told in exhaust grime and battle-scars. And yet, they stand still at attention, holding vigil, bare to the world, as both signal and anchor in the presence of danger.

I am unfolding through my work a rage for the hurt in the world.  To the current president with his sweeping, horrifying grasp on us, I want to signal STOP, to erect boundaries.  The cone says don’t cross.  The photographs expose our world in its danger, and explore the ways we seek semblance of order, witness, normalcy, and safety.  Because and despite, we carry on, as if, as if.

© Gwynneth VanLaven

The exhibit is available here!