My narratives are inspired by the surreal world of dreams, but embrace science and nature to create visions that refer to our world, but defy our known restraints. This is something Lewis Carroll and I have in common, our love of imaginative, and often absurd, storytelling. For this series, I combined elements from both of Lewis Carroll's 'Alice' books with new characters, and other personal references, to envision scenarios that explore environmental issues, social structures and identity.
The title for this series is referring to the chapter written by Carroll, A Wasp in a Wig, which was omitted after the illustrator, John Tenniel, explained he could not see his way to a picture and it was an opportunity to condense the story.
The site specific interactive installation, “Identification,” was inspired by the study of human mirror neurons, the birthplace of empathy, and how they connect us to the actions and feelings of others. I was interested in how the connection to our loved ones is so different from those we perceive as “others.”
The paintings represent multi-faceted self-portraits with my thoughts and emotions expressed in marks and forms. I experienced a form of cognitive dissonance, or conflicting emotions, when faced with this topic of connecting with others. Like many people, I empathized towards others, but I am overwhelmed by the issues and scope of those in need, so I tend to turn inward. I chose a muted palette for this series to reflect the solemn subject matter, but the high contrast and metallic elements express the complexity and intensity of the emotions.
Identification: Amy Kollar Anderson
acrylic on canvas : 38" x 38" : 2013 Collection of A. Skrlac Studio Images
acrylic, glitter and paper on canvas : 20" x 20" : 2013 $650 Studio Images
acrylic, glitter and iris petals on canvas : 14" x 16" : 2013 $800 Studio Images
acrylic, glitter and paper on canvas : 36" x 36" : 2013 $2200 Studio Images
Identification Face Panel #1
acrylic, glitter and paper on panel : 36" x 20" : 2013 $10,000
Identification Face Panel #2
acrylic, glitter and paper on panel : 42" x 20" : 2013 $10,000
This body of work became known as the Vivarium Series, because “Vivarium” is Latin for "place of life" or “container of life.” These transparent containers allow me to explore diverging environments and their inhabitants, by contrasting the contents inside with the surrounding space. I wanted the Vivarium Series to evolve in two directions: one with human children in open containers and one with dolls in closed containers. The open containers suggest vulnerability. Just because the children are currently protected, does not mean they are forever. The interiors of these containers usually include a garden space, while the exterior environments illustrate toxic wastelands or altered climates. I wanted the children in these paintings to be young people I know, because this spoke to my fears about the state of the environment and the world these children will inherit. The inhabitants of the closed containers are trapped in an inhospitable environment, and the dolls serve as surrogates showing the abuse and neglect of children.