I make tiny boxes with beds. And I photograph them so that, with 3-D viewers, these tiny environments are three-dimensional, or “stereoscopic”. They are voyeuristic escapes for the imagination.
The boxes are a way for me to escape daily struggles. I imagine hiding in these small spaces, away from people, expectations, away from failures. They are pure and un-messed-with space that is private; some are lonely while others content. Are all these spaces a yearning for a virginal Eden?
When I imagine myself in these spaces, the world looks fresh again.
As a child, the world lost ‘freshness’ when I became bored. I had a low tolerance for boredom, and I would fight that childhood boredom with two different behaviors, both of which changed my perspective on a space I was phenomenally bored with: my home. The behaviors looked odd, but they resulted in a mind-shift that heightened my sense of wonder.
One method involved crawling backwards on all fours, and looking upside-down as I went through the house. Everything looked so different, yet still familiar, when upside-down. My body was so unwieldy and awkward, stumbling along as an 8, 10 or 12-year-old crawling backwards, looking through my legs like a quarterback, hoping for a new view of my house or hallway. I must’ve looked pretty strange, but what a fun way to change my viewpoint on spaces I saw all day.
I would also walk around with a small stand mirror, holding it perpendicular to my chest and gazing downward, so that it would feel like the reflected ceiling was actually the floor. This can really mess with your perception. I’d have to “step over” doorways from ceiling to ceiling – your mind and body tense when they perceive the barriers. My favorite thrill was stepping from the hallway where our family bedrooms were, out into the vast gulf that was the great room’s ceiling (it was many feet higher than the hallway ceiling). My stomach always lurched like I was about to fall into the abyss as I made that Indiana Jones-like step of faith, finding a secure floor while my mind expected my body to fall.
These bed boxes re-shape my perception of the world, too, giving it enough of a twist so that my boredom with the daily routine is routed. It’s certainly more discreet to take a trip in your imagination, resting a bit inside a tiny box with moss, rather than loping around staring down at mirrors.