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Donnabelle Casis and David Willburn 

“I am fascinated by visual perception and how meaning is derived from what is seen. I look for hidden geometries which may connect disparate and discrete perspectives to form a greater whole. My current work explores identity and its relationship to markers and patterns. I draw from various sources such as ancient Filipino tribal tattoos and textiles, trajes de luces (suits of light) or bullfighting costumes, and facial recognition software. I am also interested in the literal use of patterns in design and in the form of ritual, in order to seek when patterns change.

“Filipino tribal imagery is tied to storytelling, marks of accomplishment, and societal roles. Spanish bullfighting costume colors and embellishments have deep ties to familial history and status. Facial recognition software maps physical characteristics which determine one’s visual identity. I filter these and other images to create my own configurations rich in a variety of interpretations.”

“My work exists at the intersection of craft and fine art, and within that space I explore traditions of drawing, painting, and sculpture. The process of making mixed-media paintings, embroidered drawings, and installation projects often begins with images and ideas culled from contemporary culture and politics—photographs or memories of a specific event. Items and scenes from my own home, social institutions, or mass media are starting points that are filtered through layers of abstraction and analysis as a way of stripping away the familiarity and objectness of things and situations. These reimagined ideas and compositions are loaded with more possibility. In these abstractions I find new narratives, and I look for ways to queer the materials, reshaping and repurposing things through form and subject."


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