Talk about getting immersed in your art. Rachel Perry Welty is an artist who has created a very eye-catching series called Lost in My Life. Welty takes some very familiar consumer culture items, like bread tags, fruit stickers and take out boxes, and creates chaotic and crazy patterned backgrounds out of them. But that's not all. She then places herself in the middle. Part performance art and part installation, the series is an ironic look at how we consume and collect. “These leftovers form the language of modern life,” Welty says. “Through ritual and repetition I collect, accumulate and represent the forgotten reminders of consumption.” You've got to love how she blends herself into the background, even going so far as making a matching dress and tote in the picture above. Note that Welty never shows her face in these photos. Why? She want to “emphasize the dichotomy between personal identity and the anonymity of consumer habits.” We were able to get in touch with the artist to ask her a few questions. Read that interview below.
Lost in my Life (bread tags), 2010
Lost in my Life (fruit stickers), 2010
Lost in my Life (boxes), 2009
Lost in my Life (twist ties), 2009
Lost in my Life (take out), 2010
Lost in my Life (wrapped books), 2010
Lost in my Life (Playmobil), 2010 Where are you currently based? I live and work in Gloucester, Massachusetts and New York, NY. How long do these performance pieces/installations take you? This series is called “Lost in my Life”. In these works I am creating environments, inserting myself and then photographing the event. These are not just accumulations of consumer detritus, but rather they are created from elements stolen, or recycled from my own art: bits of discrete sculptures, drawings I've made, wallpaper created for other exhibits — materials I've gathered and used are now being re-assembled, re-worked in new ways. I think of these as performances. Months of preparation and rehearsal precede the actual moment of photographing. These photographs are a synthesis of many of the different materials and methods I've used in my work. What was the most challenging part of this series? Some of these are endurance actions with exceedingly uncomfortable poses. What is your background in art? I have a liberal arts degree (BA) in English literature. Studied at the Sorbonne for a year. Then I went to the Museum School and received the Diploma and 5th Year certificate. Who are some artists that have inspired you? Gabriel Orozco, Cindy Sherman, Laurie Simmons — too many to list. Rachel Perry Welty, Courtesy of the Artist and Yancey Richardson Gallery