Mary Corey March
b. Los Angeles, 1977
Mary lives in San Francisco with her partner, child, cat and rabbit. Her education has alternated between art and academics, with one undergraduate degree in each and one Masters in each. She is an avid traveler who pursues an extensive array of interests and studies (psychology, anthropology/sociology, history, science, history of religions and more) which inform and feed her artwork. Her first publicly displayed commission was done at the age of 16 and her work has been shown all over the United States and outside of it. She has identified as bi/pansexual since the age of 14.
In May of 2017 she became disabled with ME/CFS and is wheelchair bound outside the house. After an adjustment period she has continued her work with the help of assistants.
I walk a tightrope between defined states in all of my work. My work exists in spaces between "art" and "craft", "high tech" and "low tech", so-called "women's work" and "men's work". Sometimes the expression of that liminality is in the concept, sometimes the materials. In the case of my interactive pieces, the participant often enters liminal space during their interaction, hovering between definitions and making decisions within a system designed for reflection. The root of my work is exploring both the individual person and humanity through identity, relationships, diversity, and commonality. How do we define ourselves and each other? How to we frame our experiences? How much of our humanity can come through in a data format? Through our symbolic images? Our words? Our definitions? Our bodies? These are the questions I delve into again and again.
Though I work in many mediums, fiber and fiber techniques appear throughout my work. Individual fibers become lines for drawing and ways to create connections between objects or ideas, to literally tie things together. Different fiber techniques express concepts by their nature and history, like the way stitching expresses a technique for holding both fabric and the damaged body together, or how embroidery was used for centuries to record histories both national and personal. Among the fiber techniques, weaving is the most compelling to me. It is one of the earliest marks of civilization and at the same time the basis for computing (Jacquard looms were arguably the first computers). This makes weaving an ideal medium for exploring the intersection of high tech and craft.
Process has always been important to me and I usually make it notable in the work if not visible in real time. The labor of the handmade, the texture and layers, the improvisations and fumbles are all important expressions of humanity to me, especially in the face of the digital world. Since coming to the Bay Area my work increasingly explores the intersection and exchange between the digital and the human, how binary data and computer interaction mediate and reframe human experience and self image.
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