Doilies of Imminent Destruction

The Doilies of Imminent Destruction Series began as a meditation on the banality of our dialogue surrounding our fearsome power to irreparably alter an environment, and an investigation into the corporately chosen idealized representations of these disaster sites prior to the disaster.   The images I chose to work with are axonometric, idealized, and shown from above in the stereotypical style for architecture and P.R. firms.  These industrial architectures are removed from their environments and fenced in by the familiar outline of a lace doily, the ultimate symbol of domesticity.  But doilies have a function as well – to beautify the ugly.  They are meant to cover the water stain on the side table, the worn spot on the chair arm.  Conversely, they are also used for protection in this sense, to prevent our furniture from becoming damaged in the first place.  To protect the appearances of our domestic space, despite what might be underneath.  Doilies also speak to an old-fashioned nostalgia.  They are accouterments of another era, and reminders of gendered labor.  Tatting and crocheting lace doilies was a domestic task for generations of women, laborious and painstaking.  The desired outcome was a perfection of form that would become an heirloom, evidence of a desire for beautification.  But as we have seen in each of the disaster sites depicted, perfection is unrealistic -- stitches are dropped, mistakes are made, the human hand is always present, sometimes to disastrous ends.  


This series began as an investigation into the issues surrounding nuclear energy, but has continued to expand into other sites of environmental devastation.