...the day-to-day process of an obsessive "Maker".....
Sunday, March 12, 2017
series was born of the terrible things in my news feed that keep me
awake at night. I felt certain that there was a common denominator to
all of these crimes: against children, women, “minorities”, the poor, animals, and
the earth. Five years of research into these seemingly disparate
transgressions has resulted in a deep investigation of entitlement and
the need to dominate. "#bullyculture" represents the first phase of this ongoing investigation, one that has become chillingly prescient. Bullying
permeates our culture and our institutions. Our country threatens any
who would oppose U.S. interests. Our children grow up indoctrinated into
capitalism, with fewer and fewer restraints on corporations who control
workers and consumers, while destroying the planet we need to sustain
us. Parents across the country pay lip service to fighting playground
bullies while simultaneously tuned into the uber aggressive “Housewives
of…..” reality TV show, or the football game, where huge swaths of
players are forgiven rapes, and violence against animals, or their own
wives and children. We teach our kids to dominate/intimidate/annihilate
on the soccer field, preparing them for lives in the corporate sphere.
In parts of this dystopia, open carry advocates don weapons in public,
excited by the power of wielding the latent potential to mow down dozens
of people in under a minute. Unsurprisingly, four months ago, this
country elected the ultimate bully as leader of the free world. The
collective despair that has enveloped our country, and, I daresay, the
world, is not just the result of one political party defeating another.
It is that the oldest, most deeply ingrained childhood narrative, the
one that allows all of us to sleep peacefully at night, the one that
gives us the optimism to have babies, and to tell those babies (as well
as ourselves) that “everything will be alright” has been utterly
destroyed: The Bully has won. I am interested in looking at the
overlaps of entitlement and domination in our society, and in calling
out the aggressors, the intimidators, and the often overlooked larger,
systemic forces that encourage and reinforce this poison in our
Kate Kretz attended The Sorbonne in Paris, earned her BFA from SUNY Binghamton, and her MFA from The University of Georgia. She was BFA Director and an Associate Professor of Art at FIU in Miami for ten years. She currently works in her studio and gives lectures and workshops at various universities.