This container of skin impresses itself on my mind sharply, my weight accepts the tree’s busting, tender flesh. I cling to deep draws of air to hold me present. Lengths of my hair are buffeted by an ethereal sculptor. I am creator being created.
My work is the transformation of material and sculpting my body in the landscape to create artworks of embodied connection. I use performance, photography and sculptural installation to share primal engagement with material reality.
Process drives my work by sourcing my mind, body and spirit. Whether contorting my own form or carving trees as surrogates for the body, I am mindful of this triune makeup to create metaphors about being human.
By immersing myself in place, my artwork serves to bring viewers back into their body as a creature in creation. Attending to the art of the natural landscape, my work awakens the internal landscape of unadulterated self.
My accompanying poetic statements give an access point to the piece and enrich the conceptual narrative of each series.
Alyssa Coffin is an interdisciplinary artist from New England. She graduated from Montserrat College of Art in Beverly, Massachusetts in 2014 where she received a BFA in illustration with a fine art emphasis and an independent study in creative writing. She spent a semester studying abroad in Ireland in her junior year to take some time to explore her work more independently. While there she discovered a personal visual language in sculpture, installation and performance. She is currently pursuing this work as an artist in residence at Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts. While here she has had the opportunity to work with the Smoky Mountain National Park and collaborate with their artists in residence to create new work that involves a more sensory experience. Her soon to be published book, Remergance, juxtaposes poetic reflections with her artwork as an exploration of death and creation. Her work has been shown at the Cape Cod Museum of Art, The Boston Sculptors Gallery and more recently, Slocumb Gallery at ETSU.
I consider walking my form of research. Thus it is important for me to find diverse places to walk, observe and make connections. I use photography to explore my subjects and note take.
Writing is how I process the concepts in my work and follow threads of ideas into unexpected territories. My background in illustration and creative writing has given me an understanding of narrative and the use of metaphor to create meaningful fictions from real life experiences. Poetry is my method for encapsulating the ineffable.
Reading is what feeds my practice. Sometimes directly such as understanding the growth patterns of trees. Most of the time, I just absorb mythology, philosophy and theology for inspiration.
Together, these elements build upon each other to enrich connections.