Macon Reed


Invocation, 41×61 inches, Digital photographic print

I use spectacle and humor to examine the lines between transformation and failure, trauma and healing, playfulness and escapism. I make sculptures which then act as props in performances that force the sculpture to undergo a form of physical transformation through exposure to fire, fireworks, water, or use by human bodies.

These performances are then documented in photography and video. When installed, the resulting photographs, videos, and sculptures function simultaneously as distinct pieces and as multiples within one installation. The sculptures and images ask viewers to consider the physical and psychic trauma to which the objects’ scars attest.

Continuing to explore the limits of optimism through a queer and feminist perspective, I am interested in the point at which cheerfulness becomes self-destructive and contrasting representations of femme aesthetics in the media. I aim to understand how an insistence on optimism and team spirit, even in the face of potentially imminent disaster, interacts with US nationalism, female-socialization, and my own infatuation with aggressive color and sparkle.

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