Laura H. Drapac / Printmaker


For the last couple years I have become interested in making images that explore the perpetual state of flux within and between persons. These bare figurative images look to the internal points of conflict, growth, and transformation. They are inspired by real physical situations and the imagined scenarios that are created in our minds as we try to make sense of our memories.

My current prints and drawings use pared-down figurative imagery to explore psychological complexities of identity. These images isolate narrative fragments that explore the memory of personal experiences, and ultimately survey how these ventures shape self-image and projected identity. Figurative interaction and the body language of characters implies human discourse at its most banal level. Each figure's gesture and posture says something specific about how we individually react to situations when surrounded by our peers.

The figures in my works play with the attractive and accessible qualities of the human body, and are dressed enough to introduce ideas of pain, embarrassment, discomfort, vulnerability, and femininity. I clothe the figures as a reminder that they are not simply forms in space, but have a very specific tie to real people. Additionally, clothing acts as a medium for what we wish to tell others about ourselves, and this supplementary facet of communication rounds-out the gamut of non-verbal identity dialogues.

My work is not intended to detail an entire conversation, but to iterate vital moments of growth or realization within longer, more complicated series of events. Using bare contour line, I describe figures without much incidental detail. Reducing these images down to only essential marks reduces the sentimentality and distills the narrative to isolated fragments. The contrast between foreground contour line and background texture also allows for a visual exploration of mental and physical congruency. The ambiguity of a defined and detailed location within which the figures are placed stresses that these narratives are cerebral, not physical. Conceptually, it is this contrast that I use to create a dialogue between what is thought and what is acted upon.