Michael Demps’ practice is fueled by a fascination with the nature of being—being in one’s body and more specifically, the social structures that confine the body’s ability to move through the world. It is important to understand that such experiences are different in different bodies in order to develop more empathetic relationships with one another, and celebrate more complex and nuanced ways of being. As an artist, Demps is dedicated to exploring notions of the Black interior through making. This interest permeates his collaborative and non-collaborative projects. During the past year he has had the opportunity to exhibit work that contends with the mapping of an interior interconnectivity to the collective through the personal and through somatic activation. His work ranges from abstract monoprint image generation and ghost printing to creating objects that serve as spiritual markings put forth to hold space for self-discovery, recovery and recuperation. These generative systems of making through recontextualization, improvisation and repetition serve as grounding values of his practice and exist in a fugitive space against authorship as a gatekeeper of racism and capitalism. The current cultural shift due to the pandemic has left Demps searching for ways to move his practice forward and engage with audiences in new ways.
- Michael Demps
- Assistant Professor