"Stacked", Video Installation, 2015.
How did you get into debt?
I took out federal loans to attend a public university. In the next year I will be taking on an larger amount of debt to further my education with a Master's degree in Fine Art. Although the debt I currently have already limits me in many ways, this future debt will be crippling. I have weighed the options heavily, and graduate school is the right path for how I would like to proceed with my career as an artist; even if the debt will be crushing.
"Full Circle", Live Performance, 2014.
How does your economic reality effect your art?
I will always be struggling to balance paid work with my art practice. In order to stay above water and pay the minimum payments on time, I have to do all sorts of odd jobs that take up a lot of time and energy that could be better spent towards making work. It's crushing to not have the time to create new material. Even with the paid work, I will never be able to afford a separate studio rent or any of the technology that I need. My computer is 10 years old and on it's last leg of life; but the money spent on a new computer would be equal to 4-5 months of debt payments. The sort of work I make is not easily reproduced, nor is it commercially profitable. Performance art is a calling, and I'm navigating the economic realities the best I possibly can.
Would your work look different if you weren't in debt?:
My work would absolutely look different if I was not in debt. I could be able to use nicer equipment to film my performances, instead of the low quality equipment that I currently work with. I could also perhaps be able to afford a larger space or a studio instead of having to work from my small bedroom.