In 2011, I began collecting fucoid-structure fossils from undeveloped gullies and bluff shelters in Northwest Arkansas. Their organic relief patterns suggest something baroque and botanical. My research revealed that they were not related to plant life in the slightest. The fossils were actually the burrows and pathways of ancient arthropods as they searched for food along the sea floor. These had filled with sediment over 300 million years prior.
In the series Fucoid Arrangements, I use casts of trace fossils indigenous to the region as a primary element of construction. The innate confusion of what the fossils appear to be and what they actually are mirrors my own investigations into the concept of the familiar (the idea of something that is possibly known but imperfectly remembered). I retrace these paths by making casts of molds with hot glue, then arrange and assemble them creating entirely new entities that further expand the ambiguities of the original fossils. By using glue in these molds, the components took on a ghostly presence of their original shape combined with the random human element of their retracement. Casts are then assembled intuitively with other sculpted elements accounting for transitions. The results are translucent works that appear simultaneously botanical and animal, and are, in their way, a rejuvenation of a relic.