Living with scars and seeing the beauty and strength in overcoming.
My broken butterflies are a testament to the beauty of overcoming adversity. Despite being broken, their wings bear the marks of tears and imperfections, yet they still possess the ability to take flight. Some have been painstakingly mended, with wings sewn back together and holes adorned with delicate gold leaf.
In our lives, we often try to conceal our scars. When we face adversity and suffer damage, whether due to the passage of time or external trauma, we attempt to piece ourselves back together. However, sometimes the damage endures, leaving us forever changed. It is in this acknowledgment of our scars that I find inspiration for my art. I choose to spotlight these imperfections, celebrating the fact that what nearly shattered us ultimately strengthens and beautifies us.
Why I use gold leaf and thread in my butterfly wings:
Kintsugi (“golden joinery”), also known as #kintsukuroi (“golden repair”)
The incorporation of gold leaf and thread into my butterfly wings draws inspiration from the Japanese art of Kintsugi, also known as Kintsukuroi, which involves repairing broken pottery with lacquer infused with powdered gold, silver, or platinum. This philosophy views breakage and repair as integral aspects of an object's history, rather than something to be concealed.
My journey has been marked by tremendous challenges, including becoming a widow at the tender age of 21, battling ovarian cancer while rebuilding my life following the 2015 SMTX floods, and enduring a relationship with an emotionally abusive individual grappling with mental illness. The pain and grief that have accompanied these experiences permeate my work. Through my art, I strive to convey a relatable narrative of survival in the face of trauma, both emotional and physical. While my art may not directly mirror the struggles of my life, it embodies the collective experience of navigating life's chaos, including isolation, building emotional fortifications, setting boundaries, and discerning the fine line between healing and guarding one's heart. It is about embracing the scars of the past and finding beauty within our brokenness.