Mara Baldwin is an artist I met this weekend at Mimi’s Attic, my favorite local thrift store. She’s a graduate of the Californian College of Fine Arts (CCA) and works with textiles, drawings, watercolor and sculpture. Her art is phenomenal, not only aesthetically, but intellectually as well.
Look at the bedsheet she artfully – and painstakingly – deconstructed in the image above. Can you believe that it is really one of these flowered fitted sheets, the ones the local thrift shops sell? Below is how I saw it this weekend: hung in Mimi’s Attic where it blends and stands out at the same time:
Here is what Mara says about the exhibit:
This has been an interesting project for me as a way to recontextualize many pieces that I’ve hung only in gallery spaces previously. Since most of my works are made with second-hand materials it has felt, in a way, like I’ve released them back into their natural habitat. My current studio practice engages with and intervenes upon objects from domestic life and the narratives of women, both real and imagined. The installations at Mimi’s Attic reflect an interest in the palpability, previous ownership, and narrative potential of thrift.
I like the “narrative potential of thrift”. I always wonder why certain objects exude “power”, e.g Boro textiles, while others, no matter how carefully crafted feel lifeless and dead. Mara’s work clearly has power.
Find more information about Mara’s work here.