Artist StatementThough the origin of memory lies in the “past”, the “past” is an ever-present reality which forms the “present” moment. Re-memory is the process through which I have been investigating significant personal memories. It involves the re-collection and performance of activities and events from memory. The purpose of this process is to define the conditions of the present using physical or mental artifacts from the past. The acts of re-memory are meant to re-create and mimic the way that we perceive sensory cues tied to memories. Take for example the memory of a traumatic gymnastics class tied to the smell of musty, filthy gym mats covered in dried sweat. The re-placing of this smell in the present could enable the re-living of a past moment within one’s own unconscious. If this is an ephemeral experience, re-memory then is a literal attempt to re-live the past, staging the scene and allowing the subconscious to guide its progression.
Elizabeth Ashton is a performance artist and conceptual sculptor who will receive her B.F.A. from Maryland Institute College of Art in the spring of 2006. At MICA, she has been the teaching assistant for Super Pride Studio, a class concerning public collaboration and intervention in East Baltimore offered by Michael Rakowitz of the Sculpture department. Through this experience she has come to realize her goals of continued work in the public realm, as well as the prospect of earning her M.F.A. and becoming a college professor in the future. Ms. Ashton is originally from Baltimore, Maryland. She was born in 1984 to an Early Childhood Specialist and a Photographer, whose influence can be found in her current work.