I See No Ships 

An ongoing exploration of the theory of perceptual blindness

2018

Appropriation art collage piece

work-in-progress

“When you can express and articulate what’s happening to you, you have a measure of transcendence over it. It’ gives you speech it gives you self-definition and when you have self-definition and not defined by the world then you transcend.”

James H. Cone

 

A story has long circulated that as Christopher Columbus approached the coast of the “New World,” Native Americans staring out at the water—straight at his ships could not see them. The theory is that when Columbus’s ships were approaching the Caribbean islands the Native people could not see them because they had no knowledge that such technology existed, and the idea of such a thing was too much for their primitive brains to process so they were blind to the ships. This is an example of the historic biases (specifically white male biases) that are deeply rooted in cultural institutions and curatorial perspectives. I See No Ships explores how individual and/or institutional predispositions to patriarchy affect notions of religion, race, class, gender, sexuality, and nation.

 

Drawing from techniques of collage and found poetry I See No Ships explores the relationship of cultural perception, cultural commodification, and trade. Taking words, phrases, even whole passages from popular and material culture and reframing them.  Imparting new meaning through the cutting, splicing, and reinterpreting of elements. The process of weaving content into alternative interpretations is employed to address the nuances within ever-shifting identities and how we experience/create our contemporary world and culture. Within this work, Christion addresses inequity and the techniques used to form our understanding of what “ethnic” culture is in relation to the norm. This process is not simply about highlighting racial disharmony but rather addressing the cultural imbalance that stems from a denial of self-authorship and authority.

The Prestige,  2018
I See No Ship Trilogy pt. 1 of 3

Appropriation art collage piece

work-in-progress

Runtime: 07:21

I See No Ships,  2018
I See No Ship Trilogy pt. 2 of 3

Appropriation art collage piece

work-in-progress

Runtime: 08:31

Migration/Creation,  2018
I See No Ship Trilogy pt. 3 of 3

Appropriation art collage piece

work-in-progress

Runtime: 04:49

© Chris Christion, Artist/Curator