The work explores sexual fetishism with a visceral, minimalist visual vocabulary. Carved concentric lines into plaster illustrate forms that are choked off, pressed, and tied to other forms, evoking complex emotional responses to an austere geometric language. Abstraction of the subject matter allowed for the conceptual representation of fetish, eliminating the immediate stigma that reflexively occurs with its contemporary meaning; it disguises the subject matter, and mirrors the climate of sexual discretion in Washington DC. The work is a catharsis of simple form, seeking to reframe the notion of sexual fetish in a way that highlights a universal desire and satisfaction, bidding a primal sympathy from the viewer.
Specifically sexual fetishism is an emotional and sensuous distillation, a complex tenor with a focal point that results in a more intense satisfaction. The emotions and sensations themselves are naturally occurring, but isolated with intention, and thus, a fetish. Early in its etymological history, a fetish referred to a man-made religious object that is revered for its supposed magical powers, only in the past century was it secularized with the concepts of Binet’s “sexual fetish” and Marx’s “commodity fetishism”. The spiritual concept of fetish as an object seems to be socially discordant with its context sexually, but in all instances its meaning is bridged by desire, worship, and influence. The word fetish is imbued with mysticism and sensuality; my work is an exploration its history while seeking to define its contemporary nuance.