Event Title

The Shape of a Child

Location

Alumni Hall North

Department

Art

Abstract

I am a Mexican-American artist working in sculpture. My work explores various notions of beauty and the complexity in human nature through sculptures that capture my own experiences as well as my critical look at culture, sociology and politics. My current work seeks to further explore the theme of mental health and the impact that childhood trauma has on adulthood, a topic often ignored but one that must be addressed with urgency. According to the Minnesota Psychological Association, the number of children growing up in a single-parent home in the United States has reached concerning levels. Research suggests that children raised in households lacking a father or a mother experience, develop psychosocial problems in greater frequency than those living in a healthy and loving environment with their parents. Adverse outcomes that may result from the absence of the parents in the child’s life include attachment issues, mental health issues, child obesity, poor school performance, substance use, and criminal justice involvement to name a few. My experiences as a child and adolescent have had a profound influence on the imagery that permeates my recent artwork. Growing up in an environment with an alcoholic parent led me to encounter neglect and face behavioral issues at an early age. Those issues would accompany me through adolescence, making my personal relationships and academic life difficult due to the amount of anxiety, unresolved trauma and poor coping mechanisms. Through the depiction of real-life scenarios created using mixed media, I narrate stories of unresolved trauma and its consequences projected through individual subjects. This physical manifestation of traumatic experiences I utilize to invite my audience to a journey of self-discovery and self-healing.

Faculty Sponsor

Kim Ambriz , Northeastern Illinois University

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May 6th, 1:00 PM

The Shape of a Child

Alumni Hall North

I am a Mexican-American artist working in sculpture. My work explores various notions of beauty and the complexity in human nature through sculptures that capture my own experiences as well as my critical look at culture, sociology and politics. My current work seeks to further explore the theme of mental health and the impact that childhood trauma has on adulthood, a topic often ignored but one that must be addressed with urgency. According to the Minnesota Psychological Association, the number of children growing up in a single-parent home in the United States has reached concerning levels. Research suggests that children raised in households lacking a father or a mother experience, develop psychosocial problems in greater frequency than those living in a healthy and loving environment with their parents. Adverse outcomes that may result from the absence of the parents in the child’s life include attachment issues, mental health issues, child obesity, poor school performance, substance use, and criminal justice involvement to name a few. My experiences as a child and adolescent have had a profound influence on the imagery that permeates my recent artwork. Growing up in an environment with an alcoholic parent led me to encounter neglect and face behavioral issues at an early age. Those issues would accompany me through adolescence, making my personal relationships and academic life difficult due to the amount of anxiety, unresolved trauma and poor coping mechanisms. Through the depiction of real-life scenarios created using mixed media, I narrate stories of unresolved trauma and its consequences projected through individual subjects. This physical manifestation of traumatic experiences I utilize to invite my audience to a journey of self-discovery and self-healing.