billy mcguinness
In an age of rampant cynicism and growing apathy, my work is a means of engaging with other people, opening up to their experience and building understanding between us. Inspired by the transient nature of conscious existence and the attendant preciousness of the present moment, I wrestle with some of the most basic (and at the same time most complex) problems of contemporary culture: hunger, mass incarceration, poverty. Through a variety of mediums and processes, images and gestures, I reflect on and respond to the physical, spiritual and psychological consequences of public policy, how we meet or deny needs, alleviate or exacerbate suffering. My source materials – drips from a rack of soup kitchen coffee cups, dirt from the bottoms of shoes, handwritten letters, Internet downloads, Excel spreadsheets, food and my own body – are remnants that point toward something unseen and carry the energy of something untouchable. From these traces, new forms emerge and new patterns are created, meditations on the value of human life, the interconnectedness of all things and the possibility of progress.