Artist Statement

I paint and collage unsettling gardens that reflect issues in modern society. The concept of gardening comes from people’s desire to possess nature, but for fear of the unknown wild, they want a more well-mannered version. Thus, gardens are synthetics nature: People trim the twigs, nurture the roots, and eliminate the weeds in order to contain nature in mild, manageable, and favorable conditions. These acts of maintenance parallel the conflicts and fears of alienation in modern society: stereotypes, social acceptance, and authority. I choose cheerfully-colored children’s toys, organic shapes, and common household objects as my painting subjects to curate a seemingly perfectly functional garden of collected objects. But beneath the harmonious surface, the unsettling and underrepresented beings demand for audience’s attention. Through my painting, I present the conflict between a carefully regulated homogeneous society and unrestrained desires of individuals while challenging the authority of social acceptance.