PLEASE WALK ON THE GRASS

SEATS OF POWER

Handwoven pile rug

2017


My personal practice investigates and visualizes government structures and processes into plain language. I grew up a 15 minute drive away from “the shot heard ‘round the world” in Massachusetts, and the rhetoric of my history classes often focused on the mythic founding of the USA. Today, I look more critically at how basic principles of democracy are taught to children. In this woven rug, vacancies in the rug pile represent the physical locations of the White House, Congress, and Supreme Court buildings. Three floor cushions (Seats of Power) are designed to look like the buildings.

Please Walk On the Grass
My personal practice investigates and visualizes government
structures and processes into plain language. I grew up a 15 minute drive away from “the shot heard ‘round the world” in Massachusetts, and the rhetoric of my history classes often focused on the mythic founding of the USA. Today, I look more critically at how basic
principles of democracy are taught to children.

How can textiles become teaching tools?
This ongoing work began with an idea to visualize the principle of the separation of powers with an interactive handwoven rug. This concept is usually depicted as a 2D infographic with text. 

Can playing with a concept give participants the agency to understand and then critique it?
I reflected on how kids learn the organization and structure of “normal” US towns when playing on car rugs and how placing a work on the floor is an invitation for interaction and understanding, like maps embedded in granite floors.

A planning collage shows the physical distances and pathways between the Supreme Court, White House, and Congress.

1.JPG

Photos taken at the Rhode Island State House