Sunday Portrait, watercolor on arches paper, and an edition of vinyl lp records with screenprinted flocking on album covers (edition of 3), 2007
Sunday Portrait is a multimedia, multi-sensory engagement with people who are loyal readers of the Sunday New York Times. By posting a classified ad in Seattle newspapers, I established a network of people who have developed rituals of reading the New York Times every Sunday. After a preliminary telephone conversation with participants, during which time I explained the terms of my project, I arranged to meet them on a Sunday of their choice. I met with participants every other Sunday for a year. I met them at the location where they normally read the Sunday Times, and conducted a recorded interview with them in an attempt to tease out their specific reading rituals. I found these rituals to be both visual (where they read, what time of day, how they dress) and non visual (appropriate dispositions of the mind, organizational control of time and space). Following the interview, I photographed the participants while they read. Working creatively from photographic documents and digitally recorded interviews, I developed 24 watercolor portraits and an audio collage (remastered for LP records), which, when taken as a whole, suggest how personal taste informs daily rituals related to consuming the news. Sunday Portrait is my attempt to reflect on who consumes these texts and images (many of them horrific), and in what context they do so, ultimately redefining the relationships between consumption, leisure, and education. The project exists as an exhibition of 24 watercolor paintings and an edition of 3 LP record albums, each with a flocked album cover.