Emerge is an act of resistance to the pandemic, by creating and manifesting art and magic, from destruction, pain, and loss. Emerge reclaims identity through alternate forms of knowledge and the natural world.
Emerge is a series of collages by Los Angeles based artist Stephanie Mercado. The works in the exhibition are constructed from hand-carved hand-printed elements and colored papers that merge traditional printmaking with experimental practices, fine art and craft.
Mercado’s artwork explores feminist narratives, including women in the labor force, domestic life, and the persecution of women through witch hunts. We often shape our identities by the work that we do, and working conditions can either make or break us. The pandemic re-contextualized the role we each play in creating a functioning society. For many, especially women, blurred work-life boundaries led to mass resignations. Mercado’s artwork evaluates the psychological effects capitalism has on workers and follows the journey of a character that breaks through the mold, in a rediscovery of self.