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Artist ID: 2488

Reaching for, grasping at, embracing, probing and prodding, these hands (both attached to my body and depicted so often in my work), they hold so much. As an artist, again and again, I find myself scratching at the surface of various possibilities, and the satisfaction of fingernails caught under the edge of things sensed (though rarely clearly seen) keeps me picking at, peeling back, and digging for more.
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First Position, 2020

These felted hands are feeling hands, probing hands. But whose? Poised and ready, between fingers spread in open gesture, they hold the fullness of potential between them. Nodding to the string figure games of youth, this work came to life as my child, the second-born, grew within me not long ago. The cord she and I shared, connecting us, pulsing with infinite variability, held the imprint of a genetic anomaly we'd learn of in the months following her birth. But what will it mean for her? For us? Made from a photographic image of an actual umbilical cord, this band of flesh is depicted here as separate from the bodies it once held close - an umbilical ouroboros, simultaneously devouring and giving birth unto itself. Stretched by these hands, reshaped and reconfigured, it is pulsing, pulsing, pulsing with all those what ifs and wheretofores. These hands. They hold, they probe, they feel for and pick at the surface of something far beyond the scope of this game. What is it, then, to begin again?
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Let It Shine (a fire in my belly), 2021
to view video submitted, click here: https://youtu.be/mMZjN_vfbxU

let it shine. let it shine. let it shine.
a song I grew up singing, but one that
(like so many others)
has become imbued with meaning
as I’ve aged. as I’ve grown.
as I’ve become the one in whom others grow.
this little light of mine. I’m learning how to let you shine.
I think I’m learning this from you.
there’s a fire in my belly.
but I feel it in my chest.
it burns, burns, burns.
solar plexus. ring of fire.
the swelling,
the welling of things swallowed
down, down, down.
transition, so they say.
dilation. then descent?
the final stage of labor?
no. finality, it’s a myth.
to exert one’s powers.
of body, yes. but also of the soul.
wholly there, yet thinly veiled.
beyond. just barely seen.
the light, your light, it blazes though.
glaring brightness. backlit.
casting, shifting shadows.
shadows cast by? casts of? me?
all mothers shine a little? yes, and artists, too, I think.
sending up and
glimpsing flares, though
always flickering.
transparently layered. all at once.
blending and blurring between.
picking and probing at.
focused on.
peeling back.
waters (somehow) still
intact.

Lauren Frances Evans currently lives and works in Birmingham, AL where she is an Assistant Professor of Art and Gallery Coordinator at Samford University. She completed her undergraduate studies at the College of Charleston and received her MFA from the University of Maryland, College Park. Evans has participated in residencies at Franconia Sculpture Park, Elsewhere Living Museum, the Vermont Studio Center, and the Stay Home Gallery and was a recipient of the International Sculpture Center’s Outstanding Student Achievement in Contemporary Sculpture Award. She is an artist member at Ground Floor Contemporary and serves on the board for East Village Arts. Evans is the founder and facilitator of the Artist/Parent/Academic Network and is mother to Agnes Prairie and Edith Moon. Through the lens of maternal subjectivity, in her interdisciplinary work, she probes at the visceral tensions of threshold moments, and scratches at liminal flickerings of the beyond.

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