by Allora McCullough


Current Artist Statement:

I am interested in creating environments that foster conversations around uncomfortable topics. Some subjects such as death, racism, abuse, and sexual violence are not deemed appropriate for polite conversation. These topics are discussed behind closed doors and in private, but they are issues that affect almost everyone. I believe that an open platform to talk about these painful circumstances is necessary to bring about change. If we want to make the world a better place, where better to start than with a conversation in a safe place?


MFA Thesis: Perpetually Fleeting

What happens when you die?

This is as ancient a question as the first conscious awareness of mortality. Conversations about the meaning of life, death, and the spiritual unknown are difficult. In a world where so many disagreements and distractions impede these topics, it is important to pause and reflect.

My art practice is a meditation on the eternal questions of life, death, and purpose. My curiosity compels me to create a shell for that which cannot be seen. Ultimately, I am searching for a physical representation of the human soul. Mixing, building, soaking, breaking, smoothing, joining, firing, repeating— this is a semblance of rite, ritual, and practice in an attempt to create meaning for the unknown.

I am approaching a representation of the ethereal body through an exploration of the sculptural figure and vessels for the transcendent soul. This elusive concept keeps my research focused around psychology, consciousness theory, and world religions. The guardian figures are tangible reminders that we are not alone. They act as totems, individual relics that comfort their owners with the notion that there may be something else interacting in our lives beyond what we can perceive. They give presence to the invisible spiritual realm and provide a sense of security or protection for people.