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Ariel Maya Kleinberg

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Over the last four months, I have created several hundred pages and paper cutouts representing nightmares, news reports, divine forces, and the discoveries of research and reflection. This is my reaction to the deeply disturbing events that have been unfolding since the election. Fears and hopes, my own and of others.

These works are made of paper, cardboard, plastic, and foil, scraps and bureaucratic documents. They are single and double-sided. Some of them are provisional, scrawled notations; some are labored over, some found. I am investigating sorrow, rage, ignorance, love and hate. I am trying to understand the horror and heroism of everyday life and the forces that have always acted upon us.

I am drawing the great gods War, Greed, Wealth, and Tyranny engaged in conversation and battle. I am taking the allegorical figures historically painted by men and used by the state-- Justice, Liberty, Peace-- and I am re-envisioning these women as queer feminist heroes and humans of all colors, genders, religions and abilities. I am breaking with the traditions of seductive beauty and silence.

Together these works are growing into a nonlinear narrative and cosmology of my growing understanding of the world, a visual epic poetry with all its tangents and mythic explanations. As I continue to make these works at home, I see them extending beyond my walls. I want to create a space where people can interact with them, where they can be part of a greater dialogue.

With our freedom of speech threatened, I feel increasingly compelled to speak out, connect, and create relentlessly. To continue to make work at this time is an act of resistance. I find hope in the fact that we are continuing to see, to feel, to react.

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