Displaced Pieces

“I don’t want it here anymore. It just sits there taking up space. It doesn’t make sounds I want to hear. It’s useless to us now. The time I could put up with it is over. I want it out of here. Get rid of it. Make it go away.”

“Where should it go? Does anyone want to hear the sounds it can still make? Can it adopt new rhythms, create new melodies, sing new songs? Can it find a new purpose, be valuable, contribute. Can it find a new home, be welcome in a new place?”

From the beginning, this place we now call home has been inhabited by peoples from away. Whether for perceived or promised opportunities, or as the result of oppression or coercion, migrants have roots in other lands, in other times. In one narrative, history can be seen as an endless series of displacements, of peoples leaving one place either by force or by choice and reinventing themselves in another place, searching for a better life.

These assemblages are made primarily of pieces from pianos that I have salvaged from homes where they are no longer wanted. I disassemble these pianos into their thousands of constituent pieces and then make sculptural objects from the pieces and other salvaged objects I find.
I see the myriad pieces found in these pianos as a metaphor for the innumerable number of people that have been displaced throughout history. Breaking down pianos into their individual parts, I try find a new appreciation for this collection of unwanted objects by seeking new harmonies and new purposes for them – to make them useful in a new context, to make the unwanted useful and wanted again.