A selection of paintings by St. Louis-based artist Marisa Adesman. Vacillating between the familiar and the surreal, Adesman takes on the fork as a time-travelling, genre-bending protagonist. At times appearing as a symbol of domesticity with ties to the feminine experience — bound or entangled, free and liberated — the fork also works to call into question notions of civility and hierarchies of value. As she explains:
“we spend an enormous amount of time and energy trying to convince ourselves that we are better than, or at least different from, animals. By using various cutlery to feed ourselves, we dine rather than eat, believing we are somehow more refined, more civilized than other species. However, in my paintings, my forks are rarely doing the work of forks, but rather they contort fluidly, shift shapes, and camouflage to their surroundings. By becoming alive, my forks highlight our reliance (as consumers and tool-makers) on other animals, plants, and systems. The bending forks ask us to rethink whether humans are truly the pinnacle of evolution, or merely players in a much vaster game.”
Check out more of Adesman’s work below!