Tracy Marie Taylor

Title

Tracy Marie Taylor

Location

Chicago
USA

Artist Statement

Cried Milk (2018 - present)
Cried Milk uses data collected from a smartphone app to visualize what it looks like to exclusively breast pump for twelve months. Each visualization represents one month of data. The blue rings represent one hour, the change in value tracks the hours of sunlight and darkness, while the change in saturation indicates broad weather patterns (sunny versus cloudy). The straight lines each represent one day and the yellow circular bursts represent each 30-minute pumping session. The size of each circle correlates to the quantity of milk collected. This project connect to broader cultural conversations about motherhood. As infertility rates continue to skyrocket, many women experience motherhood through a similar, clinical lens. My hope is that this project gives voice to the millions of women who have struggled to become mothers and honor the under-valued labor of motherhood.

The Shape of Your Sounds (2017 - present)
Using audio surveillance technologies provided by a commercial baby monitor, I capture my baby’s cries and translate that data into visual shapes. The sound waves loop back on themselves in a 360-degree rotation. The result is vaguely reminiscent of the shape of a flower; each burst of sound looks like a petal. The initial purpose for this project was to try to find visual patterns that could be more easily interpreted. However, I quickly realized this was a fool’s game; the visual patterns are as indiscernible as his sounds. Therefore, what remains is a visual record of a moment in time; a beautiful reminder of those sleepless nights when the world was comprised of just my son and myself.

Sleep Regression (2016 – 2017)
“Sleep Regression” is a series of intimate works that were painted in the space of nap times and record the moments I watched my son while working in my home studio. The paintings’ small size and blue palette reproduce the video format and color, mimicking the tension between the close, private space of sleep and the distance created by the act of surveillance. The effects are eerie and disturbing images of rest. Lingering in the unconscious state of sleep the baby’s body looks lifeless. Are these representations of a sleeping child or a fetus? These works are thus unusual documents of baby’s first year of life–odd surrogates for the family photo album.

The gray-scale paintings, on the other hand, reinforce the reference to the sonogram, creating layers of distance. The painting series thus portrays an interesting paradox: the increasing stylistic abstraction chronicles my catharsis after years of fertility struggles as I move further away from my past sorrows, yet the works also reflect a turn inward and becomes more specific to my body (womb) and more private. The delineated forms in black, white, and grey look like the thermal imaging of a birth–drapery resembles the uterine wall, a dark ground morphs into a vaginal opening.

Topic

Exhibitions

2018- “Fits and Starts,” Roman Susan Gallery, Chicago, IL
2018- “The Shape of Your Sounds” (solo), Sonnenschein Gallery, Lake Forest College, Lake Forest, IL

Citation

“Tracy Marie Taylor,” Artist Parent Index , accessed July 18, 2019, http://www.artistparentindex.com/items/show/379.

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