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Untitled by Nicolet Schenk '13

Broken Work

Artist: Nicolet Schenk '13

"My first project was to create an illustration for the article In Praise of the Broken Home by Ellen Lupton (who happens to be my graphic design teacher by the way). After reading the article, I knew two things stood out in my mind visually. One was the pink couch with which Ellen seemed to connect her experience. She mentioned it frequently, and it almost seemed like a metaphor for her memories of the traumatic experience. The other element that stood out to me was how her parents ended up living next door to each other, after divorcing. In my mind I pictured a wife house and a husband house, facing in different directions and subtly turning away from each other.

So, to incorporate both ideas, I created the room with the couch (the space that is Ellen's subconscious memory) and the two houses in a picture on the wall. The Siamese twins act as both two people, and one person, for in the article, she has a twin that went through the same situation as she did, but in her mind, she could have experienced a split in emotion. One side of her wanted to take responsibility and act as though she was not affected by the divorce, while the other wanted to curl up and cry. A struggle with how to act.

First I made a pen drawing, then I went over it in water color. I decided to post both of the images, for I can't decide which I find more powerful. I tried to lighten it up a bit when I added the color, because Ellen's article has an upbeat tone, and I realize that my piece has more weight."