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Past SPE Annual Conferences

Erin Neve

SPE Member since 2013
Member Chapter: South Central

2016 Combined Caucus Juried Show

These photos are part of an on-going series, Bread Towers, and explore themes of fragility, transformation, and bodily ritual in search of transcendence. This work began in 2012 when I accepted a job at a religious school, and I found myself observing others acting out sincere devotion grounded in specific bodily rituals. I watched as they bowed, chanted, sung, ate wafers, and prayed. They believed that bodies that ritually perform these sacred acts express the divine. Guided by a complex history of liturgical tradition, like a dance, I watched as these devout practitioners performed for God to make visible that which is invisible.

In Bread Towers, I build towers of bread as stand-ins for the physical body. The structures are made of individual bread pieces balanced entirely on each other. In my studio, the act of balancing quickly became a meditative ritual that requires focus, patience, and a delicate hand. Most towers fall within seconds; some last minutes so that I am able to photograph the structure before it collapses. I learn each piece of bread, how it is shaped, how it shifts, moves, where the weight falls, its density, its limitations; each piece becomes a part of the whole bread-body. The resulting photographs are minimalist still lives of upward grounded fragile pillars of bodily material.

Intincted Bread Towers

Pink Communion Wafer Tower

Dinner Roll Tower 3

Matza Bread Tower

Altar Bread Tower 2

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