Lacey McKinney
Artist Statement - I am You / Dissolution
This work was initiated during a one month residency at Fremantle Arts Centre in Western Australia. Interaction with community and gallery visitors is a vital aspect of the work. Various faces of people that I met while in Fremantle are merged to create one image, thus presenting one portrait to represent many individuals or the multiplicity of a single entity. Boundaries melt into each other, opposites interchange and singularity becomes pluralistic.

Similarly, the blurred images insinuate movement through time. The ambiguity of the likeness or specificity of a unique identity suggests that time acts against the idea of a fixed or absolute self. The condition of being in space and time is subject to change and dissolution.

Artist Statement - Skype Paintings
The body of artwork that I call Skype paintings are made from using screen captures of video chat conversations for drawing and painting references. The act of recreating the same image many times with various technological processes describes the initial event by creating a story, much like an embellished memory. The face becomes transmuted and its fluidity changes after it has been passed through multiple filters - a moving video, a still photograph, then a painting.

The experience of communicating through Skype led me to investigate the notion of digital being. One question I pose regarding computer simulations and the vacancy of physical closeness is: Can computer technology provide a substitute for bodily sensation and perception? During video chat, we experience a digital system that mimics physical reality and actually produces a representation that differs from the intended correspondence - what we perceive is a copy. Therefore, the visceral body is mediated by pixels. This demonstrates a situation that fails to provide complete satisfaction, not unlike the Heideggerian idea of empty intending. Artificiality of color, time, space and tactility is apparent during video chat. This reveals the absence of the other person.

I propose that the recognition of difference, contrary to the goals presented by correspondence in digital and virtual reality, reveals the authenticity of perception.

Artist Statement - Flesh Paintings
Throughout history, oil paint has been used as a visual and tactile analogy for flesh. I use layers of paint to convey layers of visceral tissue. The intent to create empathy through sensation leads to broader notions of perception, mortality, ephemerality and the longing to stay young.

I manipulate the media so as to illuminate the process of life and decay with wet and dripping fluids. I enjoy dualities that can conflict and complement simultaneously. I want the paint to breath, to be warm and cool, filled and empty, controlled and free. Some of these paintings are started using a first layer made with a mono print. The image is painted onto glass and then pressed onto the canvas. The paint is thick then gradually disperses. This process references the passage of time in a direct manner, supporting the idea of growth and decomposition.