Radically Vulnerable Art
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Self Suppression

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The Artist Talk

The Artist Talk

Self Suppression

See Artwork Featured on the Post digital printmaker (W/ Artist Interview): 
http://thepostdigitalprintmaker.tumblr.com/post/138109220142/brianna-harlan-ba-thesis-hanover-college-indiana

Self-Suppression, 2015
Linoleum relief prints, wax, wood, mixed media
Self-Suppression, 2015 Individual Titles
Believe me, I’m trying. (middle)
I can’t. I’m tired. (right)
Because I felt like it. (left)

Wax is fragile, hard to control, and its environment affects its shape and stability of form. Cutting out wooden shapes is simply a practice of going through the motions. The wax prints (the inner turmoil) are trapped in the wooden structures (the outward, general representation of self). Going through the motions and forcing energy into a pattern helps give stability to the inner self, but it also traps and inhibits it. 

The three poses respond to their environments, each representing different ways that this unhealthy and harmful divergence is channeled and conveyed. Even when the self complies with its restraints– seeking control, security, and a disciplined appearance– it still suffers internally. When the turmoil overrules the self-control, the figure’s response to the suppression shifts one way or the other, to despondency or rebellion. At these extremes, the frame and pattern of the exterior structure suffers as well– in quality and stability– as the containment of the turmoil is challenged.
 
The thin, elusive tethers limiting them are covert; still, the restraint of this inner turmoil is reflected in the pattern that traps it and in the relationships between the internal environment and external appearance. Together the internal, external, and three poses display the self across a range of being when parts of our being are suppressed.