Artist's Statement

The word, pause, provides the conceptual frame for my art. I often feel that I rush through the day, packing too much into the hours and minutes. But in my artwork, I want to create an opportunity for viewers to suspend their own daily lives and to take a brief moment from our insanely busy world, in order to consider our role as individuals in a rapidly changing environment.

My work is situated often outdoors and intervenes in the everyday flow of life. I explore different aesthetic tactics to spark the curiosity of an audience of passers-by --causing them to stop, to pause. My goal is often to make overlooked things more visible, visceral or tangible.  

My art making emerges from a process of working in collaboration with communities and through research.  I use a wide variety of materials from sugar to chalk, from performance to embroidery. I blend materials because it was the way I grew up experiencing the world. As the child of an artist and a museum professional, I learned about the world through a constant combination of art forms that were on display in the museum but equally through the public programs, which permeated the neighborhood.

My most recent projects investigate themes of urban revitalization, the environment and civil liberties. I have experienced that art can raise awareness and engage communities in improvement in ways where traditional politics fall short. I have come to believe that art can play both a disarming and instigating role.

Julia Mandle