This is a work in progress mixing up ideas about what everyone wants: love, power, celebration, houses, cars, chandeliers, small children, candelabra, freedom, fighting racism, money, discovering gold, sex, music, travel, medicine, romance, taxes, time, and preparing for death. And that: “life is short, so focus on the good stuff.” Some of it is about things that give us momentary satisfaction, or things that are associated with good feelings or feelings of completion. As well, this series is a call to make the commonplace and everyday things precious, easy, and fun.
This series started out with paintings about early motherhood.
These moms in action are fully doing everything wrong: baby as fashion accessory, baby tied to wall. They comment on actual and imagined expressions of Motherhood which we see everywhere.
Some of this work focuses on cars made in the 60’s & 70’s, or modes of transport. As these were the last non fuel-efficient cars, we’ll never see them being made again. They are like dinosaurs—huge and relative to life on earth—temporary.
Using a dishwasher’s ethic of continuity and the vision of a voyeur these paintings started out personal in the gritty narrative, but they are mostly about painting paint. Painted with some indifference and ambivalence this subject matter has coincided nicely with the synchronicity of finding things in the street to paint on. True to the current economic atmosphere this body has focused largely on the rapid creation of, and inexpensive cost of making the work. Using what you’ve got: or recycling.
Turning the idea of the importance of the mundane on its head, it became all about connecting with the unconscious mind, while finding things in the trash to paint on: plywood, Styrofoam, dresses, fabric, packing materials, canvas, and paper, furniture. Finding things that match the current ideas she was working on. Like a cloistered nun working with the repetitive nature of these paintings is like prayer. Painting floor tiles, and other repeat patterns evoke the monotony of daily work life, the toiling away the hours of the stay at home mother, or other day laborer.
The question became: is the act of making the art or the subject matter more important? Answer: Just make it look like food. Deep down they are about the quintessential Cinderella complex. Dreaming is free.
Charlotte Ghiorse enjoyed very much living in Chinatown for 6 years, thank-you Chinese American Arts Council for the show.