Years ago I made a small doll out of scraps, a doll which I recently I scanned and digitally edited into an art historical context. When someone asked me Where are you in art history? I understood the question's meaning but thought it an odd thing to ponder.
Playing the doll as an alter-ego, I tried out different periods of western art history. I began by making fun of images that were outside my aesthetic. But then, with a sense of shock when people responded to my work with laughter, I began to feel protective of my alter-ego/doll. I began thinking about her as a representative of humans in my society who do not meet the norms of beauty/acceptability. I began thinking about putting my doll in a variety of art historical contexts that reflect a variety of cultural norms of beauty and acceptability, especially for women.
In one piece in this gallery, Oola the doll tries on Empress Theodora, surrounded by hints of intrigue, moral compassing, and war.
I hope that the viewer will respond by asking questions. What is the meaning of that ugly, bucktoothed little doll? What does humor have to do with art? What right does an artist have to appropriate images? What about the ethics of lying with the camera and computer?