Julia Kaplan

(Cumberland, Rhode Island)

On an oval mirrored panel in the galleries, with very few markings, is a figure. The marks are thick but telling, explaining the form of the body very effectively with so few lines. The tan body is missing its arms and head. Behind it are more of these mirrors, reflecting the back of the one in the front; the back appears to be a shattered mirror.

I am inspired by the human figure, with all of its movement and unique shapes and forms, and I enjoy putting pieces of what I love in my work. As a Psychology and Visual Art double major, I often like to incorporate both of my studies into my work, which helps me to feel a deeper sense of connection with what I am making. 

Ehyeh Asher Ehyeh is an installation in which the viewer can literally see themselves. In Hebrew, ehyeh asher ehyeh means “I am that I am” literally but colloquially, “I will become what I choose to become.” These statements resonated with me as I made this work. They show the duality of how we see ourselves. 

Painting on both sides of mirrors is my way of manifesting these dualistic messages.  Self image can be shattered so quickly and is something with which a lot of people struggle, but it should be celebrated. My hope is for the viewer to see the beauty in these images, and therefore in themselves.

The backs of 4 mirrors of Kaplan’s work in the gallery. They appear to be shattered mirrors. They are hanging, and reflect the image in front of them.

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