Alicia Thompson, Untitled
Alicia Thompson, Untitled, approximately
24" x 24" x 18" pool floats,
Christmas balls, rope, foam packaging, plastic packaging, giraffe balloon,
wire, zip ties, 2023
Alicia Thompson’s work explores disharmony as illness by contemplating the arena of consumerism as a substitute for spirituality and the correlation between capitalism and addiction. Much of humanity is living in a way that is deeply dissatisfying on a spiritual level, is at odds with our natural environment, and the situation is untenable. This is evidenced by the amount of biological and psychological illness and addiction within Western society. Thompson’s practice engages with this disharmony on a societal level, while trying to heal and understand it on a personal and spiritual level.
Thompson’s practice is driven by the exploration of the formal qualities of objects. She uses surplus and discarded materials to create three-dimensional pieces. She is obsessed with discarded objects, which she finds to be quite beautiful. Visually, a deflated party balloon is stunning, discarded costume jewelry, precious. Thus, her practice is an exploration of materials that she changes or alters the original function of, and through the juxtaposition of additional materials that ordinarily would not go together, new meaning is made. In this process, the surplus materials are cultural markers that suggest absurdity and misplaced priority. Refuse. Recycle. Re-use. Re-form. Re-imagine.