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experimental animation combining motion with printmaking, ink drawing, and newsprint

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    Utopia is a collection of experimental animation sequences that explores the use/overuse of the ‘safe space’ as a coping mechanism and my relationship between self and home. The concept of the safe space is ideal when it comes to coping with trauma and mental health in the short term, but if one isn’t careful, it is easy to abuse and slip into self-isolating behaviors. Utopia, a word originally meaning "no place," captures the moments following the realization of my own slip into isolation- my very own "no place."

    The grungy texture and jittery, staggered movements reflects the imperfect nature of healing and my own understanding that perfection is not the goal; the goal is merely progress. Progress takes shape in the small actions depicted within the series- through brushed teeth and a clean shirt, through watering the plants and a simple meal of grilled cheese and tomato soup. In a very literal way, this work acts as a deep reflection of myself in body and style, almost as a love letter reading “I am proud of who you are, the work you’ve done, and the work you continue to do.” The small, ordinary stories I tell in Utopia covertly describe the aftermath of abusing/manipulating the safe space into a cave of self isolation and communicate the labor of love that goes into breaking the cycle of isolative behaviors, emerging from this space, rejoining the world and learning to be human again. The space I once used to lick my wounds somehow became the den of a hermit, licking old scars and finding comfort in rotting. 


Utopia exists in two distinct components: video and artifact. In its purest form, the video plays within a vague retelling of my darkened living room (an environment represented within the video, littered with the evidence of its own making. A proof of labor, in a sense. I felt that in showcasing my work, it was crucial to include as many assets as I could to honor the story told and be as honest as possible in its telling via plastering the floor and walls in my pride and my shame, seen in the images included.  

Thank you to all of my friends, family, mentors for the support that helped me in utopia

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