I am happy to announce that I will have three artworks in an upcoming group show, Mystical Magical Fantasy, at the Visual Arts Studio Association in St. Albert Alberta.
The show runs Tuesday October 3rd to Saturday October 28th 2017. Opening reception Thursday October 5th, 6-9pm. Visit the VASA website for address and other details as they become available.
The Fun Money Series of paintings are part of an exploration of the cultural significance of money and the ways that we learn in childhood to think about money through fantasy, play, and story.
I incorporate coin shaped foil candy wrappers into the paintings to create fantasy worlds in which the main actors, represented by plastic figurines, interact with the coins in different ways.
Much like the foil wrappers themselves, the innocent, shiny prettiness of the paintings belie messages that are being delivered to the individuals consuming them. The wrappers are interesting devices that teach children about money, being attractive containers representing the potential for pleasurable experiences contained within.
Fun Money: Castle in the Sky and Fun Money: Life Line represent the ways in which money can function, or be seen to function, in adult life, through enabling one to realize their fantasies, or to stay afloat while reaching for goals and building dreams.
Video Games, also, often use a coin based reward system to provide benefits to players which will help them complete their game successfully. The way coins are collected, as a reward for various actions, teach children that the getting of money is a matter of faith in the system as well as skill, persistence and effort. As they put their characters through obstacle courses that challenge their dexterity and problem solving skills in repeated attempts to capture all the coins, they learn that these are the ways they will be asked to function in a competitive adult world.
While Fun Money (Video Games): There’s Got To Be A Way (not pictured, not in the show, but click here to see more of the Fun Money series) explores the character’s faith in their ability to make seemingly impossible aerial acrobatics to collect all of the coins, Fun Money (Video Games): Leap of Faith looks at that moment where the character can see opportunity, but not the outcome of the leap to take advantage of the opportunity. Is the landing safe? We don’t know. The child playing the game learns faith in the system (that it can be done or it wouldn’t have been placed in such a way), but that faith may not necessarily be well placed in the real world.