work > An Inexhaustive Study of Power with Laurel Roth Hope

Living Room with Chandelier and Presidential Portraits
Living Room with Chandelier and Presidential Portraits

In this room we incorporated one of our collaborative Chandeliers of hypodermic needles, gel capsules and chrome above a baroque floral arrangement that slowly decayed through the duration of the exhibit. On the back wall is We Are Special, a triptych of portraits exploring our relationship to the Affordable Care Act.

The installation, An Inexhaustive Study of Power, uses the aesthetic of a richly appointed penthouse apartment overlooking a world on the brink of societal collapse as a vehicle to examine different forms of power.

We’ve realized that a growing undercurrent in our work, both collaboratively and individually, has to do with power – who has it, how it is built into systems, how it changes over time, and who benefits from it. Our country is in the midst of increasing and changing imbalances of political and financial power, our city (San Francisco) has undergone massive reconstruction (both literal and figurative) due to shifting economic powers, social media has changed the power of public perception and judgment, and the power to adapt to changing ecosystems has changed the biodiversity of our world.

Referencing the use of home staging to increase the cost of real estate and speed the gentrification of our neighborhood, we have transformed the gallery into a suite of decorated and furnished rooms, with overt nods to the ornamental style found across countless “selfie-ready” social media posts.