Untitled (Luggage Sculptures), 2023
Medium: Plastic Protection Wrap
During my flight from Philly to Toronto and back, the journey home—which has become my most frequented route since starting my MFA at Penn—I found myself thinking about sculpture a lot. How could I shape this experience, this specific one, along with the myriad ones from my past and those yet to come, into a form?
In my pocket notebook, I scribbled down the words that kept reappearing in my brain: the lines, the wait times, the waiting rooms, the gate, the borders, the security, the babble of unfamiliar languages, moving and migrating, going home and leaving it behind, the things I carried, the old places and the new ones, displacement, fear, violence, void, freedom, lost, belonging, and guilt.
I looked at my luggage, and I saw the plastic wrap encasing it—a layer of protection and differentiation. In that material and act of wrapping, I felt a deep sense of care(fulness), self-preservation, and fear. They don't stay for long—I strip them away upon arrival, a gesture that fills me with a pang of profound sadness. It's as if, in my mind, these discarded plastic shells connected the dots, weaving together all that I wanted to express with these transparent remnants, these plastic ghosts.