David Wesley White

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With roots in conceptual art and post-minimalism, my work creates visual meditations from the material excess of the nuclear family. I use objects as language; manipulating their meanings through specific arrangements. My practice pulls apart the threads of armchairs and chisels up the floor. It shines light through artifacts from the attic and teases out sentiment. Divorce, death, sex, whiteness, and gayness are analyzed through sculpture, installation, and performance. The work was born out of my hometown, West Boylston, Massachusetts, and exists between there and New York City.

Growing up in the suburbs was road kill on the highway and the safety of four-wheel drive. It was summer swims and school plays and the scar of industrialization on a New England landscape. With adulthood, the contradictions in the rosy image of my youth became more apparent. Critical theorist Bill Brown stated “We begin to confront the thingness of objects when they stop working for us: when the drill breaks, when the car stalls, when the windows get filthy, when their flow within the circuits of production and distribution, consumption and exhibition, has been arrested, however momentarily.” My creative practice accentuates the moment of vulnerability that occurs when an object fails, and holds in suspense the queerness of a familiar yet unrecognizable thing. It grapples with the fact that the depth of human emotion is contained in a mortal body.