kristen s. wilkins

Videos with dogs

I have been experimenting with making quick, short looping videos with the dogs. They may be mo homage to William Wegman’s early video work, or John Divola’s “Dogs Chasing My Car in the Desert”. I like the idea of making work with them, but with YouTube and the easy-access to video taking and editing technologies, I’m not sure they are interesting anymore. While the Wegman and Divola pieces had a certain banality, they were also fresh at the time. 

I made these to be fun, to be unexpected, to expose the actions of the dogs compared to what we would do. “Laser on Target” (above) is meant to look like a first-person shooter meets Blair Witch; the undulation of the laser in the dark is the indexical indication of the animals chasing it, even when they can’t be seen. “Luna and the Birds” (below) reflects the dog’s patience, as she listens and looks for the birds. 

Making Venuses

This last year, I have been experimenting with process-based art works. Some involve making chemical transformations to things (such as soaking found bones for weeks to clean and sanitize them, or “brewing” Oak Gall Ink), while others are about collecting or researching.

This image set contains some of my “Venuses”, the tiny, mostly feminine objects I have been drawn to at museums such as LACMA, the Met, the Denver Art Museum, or the Chicago Art Institute, to name a few. I have been making these objects to explore what it must have been like to make them originally (these figures vary in geographical as well as chronological origin), and what they might have meant symbolically.

Using archeological photographs, I recreated the Venus of Willendorf to her approximate size and proportion (I am not worrying about being 100% true to the original, but trying to capture the essence of the object), and was most surprised by the way the size of the object felt in the hand. She is always photographed floating in space, but there is no side of her that would stand or lay comfortably. However, her form fits comfortably and satisfyingly in the palm. 

The speculation around the function or reason of these objects range from goddess representations (Isthar, Ashtar, Venus, etc.) to fertility spells, toys to masturbatory aides. They could have been a means to objectify the female body, but they could also symbolize an overall appreciation of the female body within the culture and species.

I will post more as they are photographed.

Transitioning to a new Website

I have been hand-coding my website for ten years now. It was wonderful to have that much control and choice, but to be honest, I have not been keeping up with the technology (i.e. mobile device design or specialized style sheets). Moving to a flexible design option and an online editing platform is pretty appealing, so here we are! I have also struggled with my blog’s limited photo set capability. This host offers built-in blogs. Look at me, slamming my website into 2009!

New Orleans Windows series

Using Format