Thursday, November 26, 2009

Erika Heffernan

Erika Heffernan's current body of work is presented here as part of the MFA Photo Blog's 1st year graduate candidate showcase.

Erika Heffernan's artist statement:
From my earliest childhood I have needed to convert the visible world into patterns and symbols as an alternative to text. As early as age 4, I underwent a series of surgical interventions in order for me to be able to hear the world around me properly. Prior to these surgeries, it was extremely difficult for me to communicate to the world through traditional methods. I never learned to read properly as a result. I had to rely upon an intricate way of communicating and understanding the world visually. For years, this functioned as a survival technique, but now I have come to realize this need of mine to see the world in patterns and symbols has evolved into an integral part of my aesthetic approach.

I have found that photography is the best medium to express the push and pull between knowledge and a lapse of comprehension. When I go out to document real spaces I aim to address the tension between documentation and aesthetic construction in order to rethink the way we perceive the world through the photographic medium. For me, photographic subversion of these highly determined sites into indeterminate images of colors, forms and shapes that are devoid of clear information allow the viewer to enter the photograph in any location. This forces the viewer to engage in the piece by using their own mode of perception while engaging in a thought process related to my perception of these locations. This approach suggests what possibly might be creation of a new aesthetic and perhaps leads the viewer to even a new understanding of the world that surrounds us.

You may view more of Erika's work HERE!!