Flesh and Mud: Project(2020)
In this body of work, Flesh and Mud Project, I am challenging representation that can make people
uncomfortable by being vulnerable with my body. Through video, handmade paper, and the process
of making body casts, I embrace manipulating the image of my body to create monstrous or mythical
hybrids to reflect the experience of being “othered” and living in a state of hyper awareness around gendered
The full bodily engagement, use of natural plant fibers, and meditative process inherent to hand papermaking
becomes a means of surrendering to the natural environment and functions as a self-healing and
liberating process to mediate the frustration and rage of being “unseen” in everyday life. My
work acknowledges the internal effort put into that experience to find peace and comfort within
the self through the process of making paper. At the same time, I categorize my usage of
hybridity and unsettling bodily forms as an external, public method of processing negative
experience. Therefore, this body of work blends the external and internal response to defying
gender conformity: calling attention to the arbitrary yet confining structures around bodily
normativity while simultaneously working in a process that functions as a ritualized act of
healing and ownership of the body in communion with nature.
The physicality of making paper and sculptural body casts demands an intentional awareness and
exploration of the body that confronts the uncomfortable and the intimate. In these processes of
making, my body and handmade paper become a vessel for expressing a nonbinary transgender
experience and radical reclamation of the self.
Living Light, 2020
Phase 1: indi(visible)
Video. Duration: 3:08 minutes.
Phase 2: Devoured
"Identity becomes a bast and mysterious archipelago, surrounded by fog and with unknown currents and tides and indecipherable shorelines that are almost impossible to chart or navigate"
- Akiko Busch, How to Disappear: Notes on Invisibility in a Time of Transparency
Cotton paper and acrylic paint.
23 x 29 x 7 inches.
Phase 3: Unravel
Cotton rag paper, milkweed fluff, and body hair.
58 x 25 x 10 inches.
"BREAK THE BODY //
WHERE IT BENDS"
- Booker, Flesh and Mud: Bodily
Deconstruction Through Handmade Paper
Phase 4: Living Light
Living Light. 2020
Abaca and kozo paper, cheesecloth, natural dyes, watercolor paint, and acrylic paint.
8 ft. 2in. x 2 ft. x 27 in.
"To become monstrous, is also, to hold light."
- Booker, Flesh and Mud: Bodily Deconstruction Through Handmade Paper
Phase 5: Flesh and Mud
Flesh and Mud. 2020
Cotton, Kenaf, and Abaca paper, mud, hair, syringes, chicken bones, and recycled wood.
29 x 41.25 inches (each)