Shank = Survival (2013)
Shank = Survival was inspired by an interest in the notion of mono-mythological stages of initiation, survival and the return. My intentions were to align these ideas in relation to time served in prison. In many impoverished communities, having served time in prison is considered a rite of passage. I metaphorically align prison with the stage of the "Belly of the Beast" where, through violent and heroic acts, heroes are either born or reborn.
I am interested in the shank/shiv as a metaphor for heroism, while simultaneously pointing to the violence and homoeroticism that many associate with prison. I am also interested in various levels of concealment and disguise where, from a distance, color and material camouflages gender, origin, and the menacing dangers of each object.
References are also made to stories and fables throughout history where the hero is called to an adventure, and in preparation, he either forges his own weapon or is given a weapon (oftentimes bejeweled) by an aid to defend himself against the unknown.