Sonja Schenk ARTIST STATEMENT
My work explores the relationship between humankind and the environment. I’m interested in geography, anthropology, the future of humanity, and how these elements reflect on modern life. Much of my work is site-specific, and I like to research the area and come up with ideas for projects that, in my opinion, “fit” a place. I use a variety of media, mostly geared towards sculpture and painting, often in combination.
I have been making large-scale works since 2012. My first large piece was a site-specific installation for a museum in Switzerland. I was given a room in an 18th century chateau with the directive to make anything as long as it didn’t touch the walls. Since then, I’ve created a variety of large installations, including a commissioned, temporary public sculpture in Ojai, California, a large suspended work for We Rise, Los Angeles, and a recent room-sized light projection piece at Elephant Art Space in Los Angeles.
Each of these installations hopes to operate on several levels: historical referents, conceptual underpinnings, technological innovation, and tangible, physical works that often invoke transformation. I’m fascinated by the push and pull between flat and dimensional space, between static representation and time-based experience. I feel these juxtapositions mimic our reality in an era where technology and digital connection have surpassed the “here and now.”
The world we exist in and our intuitive sense of place no longer fit the Cartesian concept of a single point on a grid because nothing that is whole or that presents a consecutive, linear reality feels true anymore. These forms—the grid, the line, the point—meaningful for so long, are no longer relevant. Landscape, or whatever it should be termed now, is something far more complicated and yet less substantial.