Digital Shaman consists of a suite of 13 abstract paintings serving as snapshots of the artist’s attitude toward spirituality and magical thinking, and how these, in turn, are influenced by new technologies. While their raw canvases and drippy splattered abstract backgrounds recall outer space computer desktop images—popular in the 1990s, when western Spiritualism was also gaining traction—they additionally serve as matrixes for draped fringe, macraméd ropes, and ceramic ornament, peacefully recalling elements of a shamanic ritual. Intervention with ceramic adornments in some cases becomes figurative—sad face emojis, cell phones, fingers—in reference to harbored anxieties induced by both technology and human emotion. Each painting autonomously combats the fears and dreams that they also imply—group behavior, concepts of collectivity, self-care, and rituals––ultimately questioning whether these are relics of a new digital rite.
Nicole Doran states “Doing the actual handwork of painting – brushing, dripping, then rolling clay, making the beads… accumulating… started me thinking about everything fingers provide or produce… and joints and functions, typing and touching and holding a lover but mostly texting… lol… texting is the most important next to typing. These new works subtly hint at this line of questioning… “What is the most important movement do our fingers do?” I’m trying to get to a point of intimacy without proximity… Maybe I do not need to go through the process of engineering a robotic hand but rather do the handwork…”
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