Image of artwork titled "Ephialtes (Fighting my Dad about Vaccines)" by Jessica Campbell

Jessica Campbell, Ephialtes (Fighting my Dad about Vaccines), 2021
Collaged acrylic carpet
76 × 79 inches

As she works in the studio, juggling life’s stresses with her own internal dialogue, Campbell’s mind plays both the role of defender of her beliefs and its antagonist. This leads Campbell to consider Gigantomachy, the struggle between the gods and the giants in Greek mythology. The Gigantomachy is one of the favoured topics for representation in Greek art and can be seen in the Parthenon friezes. These representations were also meant metaphorically, as a depiction of the shift from barbarism to civilized society and victory in specific battles. In a parallel manner, Campbell’s figures, pieced together from scraps embodying immense tension, come to be metaphorical representations of the demons in her mind. Working as a bit of an exorcism, Campbell’s non-linear process and newfound figures allow her to fight back against the struggles plaguing her mind during these past few years: “What a time to be alive!”

The work in Campbell’s “Gigantomachinations” series combines both the tradition of crazy quilts and pareidolia, the experience of ascribing meaning to visual phenomena (like seeing figures in the clouds). For Campbell, this method of working intuitively and formally, as opposed to starting with a clear idea and executing it, is “the only sustainable way for me to work in this current moment through a constant brain fog.”



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