Melissa Peterson Art

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I Wish I Could Forget                                                                 

Artist Statement                                                          Work

There’s something incredibly beautiful that is inherently present in the breakdown of the individual. Typically presented as a negative, featuring the individual drowning in the surrounding culture, unable to fend for themselves, being silenced by an overbearing power that eliminates all possibility of deviation from the standard accepted mode of being and innovative thought to keep up with the status quo, to keep control. The breakdown of the individual presents us with the ability to build up society, community. Rather than framing it as being welcomed to the machine, we can begin to become a part of something larger, some beautifully intricate design that indicates a larger plan, a larger purpose than to simply be born, struggle to live, then finally die, nameless and forgotten as the generations continue on. The concept of anomie ceases to exist when the community trumps the individual. The singular “I”, the “us versus them” mentality quickly gets turned onto its head when the individual is not “big picture”.

When we can learn to begin to look beyond ourselves and our supposedly unique qualities to see that we really aren’t all that different, that we really are important in the exact same way, we can begin to see that our lives count towards something greater than ourselves. We can see that the “other” is really just an extension of ourselves, just like our individual organs and systems are really just an extension of our larger body as a whole.

But are we willing to sacrifice that? I suppose the better questions really would be what are we really losing?

Technical Aspects: For this project, I surveyed over a hundred people and recorded their responses, then compiled them in this book. Participants were asked to complete the phrase "I wish I could Forget"... a phrase that ironically chronicles the events in their lives they wish never had happened. 

To view complete book, click here

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 I Wish I Could Forget Copyright 2010 MP

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