- This event has passed.
People (UN) Seen- Works by Siri Cortez
July 28 @ 6:00 pm - August 27 @ 8:00 pm
Tapp’s Outpost is proud to present People (UN) Seen a portrait project by local artist Siri Cortez. Please join us for an opening reception on August 4th from 6pm to 8pm at 715 Saluda Avenue, Columbia, SC 29205.
The image is central in our lives be it through television, social media, or self curation. In my senior year of my undergraduate studies I found myself bombarded with images of desolation, chaos, and despair. Like most people these images flooded in and out of my thoughts and left me with a sense of impotence. “What can one do?” was a common weak refrain. However, in these months I was also cultivating a practice of presence. By shifting my focus from simply consumption of images to careful awareness I began to engage more fully with my environment and fellow person. Regarding folks instead of simply seeing them.
It is from these days that this series came to fruition. The pieces depict people experiencing homelessness who I came to know through various encounters. Their large scale and attention to detail aim to invoke a sense of intimacy between the subject and viewer. Further, I hope that by depicting these folks at all, we might add to our lexicon of images, people we may have otherwise ignored.
Though this project was born solely out of a desire to create and document the humanity I was surrounded by, it has turned into a means of aiding it as well. The proceeds from the works sold go toward purchasing supplies for the folks depicted and anyone else who may be in need.
My name is Siri Cortez and I am based in Columbia, South Carolina. My artistic interests span many mediums ranging from metal work to painting to mosaic. I am moved to work with certain media by my foregrounding of tactility in my life. I love rich color, soil, and space. My latest project reflects this compulsion of mine in its attention to psychic and physical space. I have been creating art most of my life, however I started seriously considering the impact art could have on one’s community in the past few years.