Soon after the homeland security regulations following 9/11 went into effect, Swedish American conceptual artist Michele Pred began lobbying for access to the objects confiscated from travelers by the newly established Transportation Security Administration at San Francisco International Airport. For most of a decade, she used thousands of the sharp or combustible items to create a series of assemblages that express how our lives were transformed by 9/11 and our collective reactions to it. “Scissors,” she explains, “were a particularly interesting symbol of that time in that they could represent all the lives cut short, the pain of their families, and how what was once a mundane household tool was now considered a threat.” The intimate, personal nature of the objects and their exaggerated danger highlight the ways we sacrifice privacy in exchange for illusions of safety.
- Installation Views
Raised in the Bay Area among a family of anthropologists, sociologists, and educators, Swedish American artist Michele Pred moved naturally into the realm of cultural analysis and the use of appropriated materials. She studied at the Sorbonne, California College of the Arts and Crafts (now CCA), and San Francisco State University, and she currently teaches in CCA’s Interdisciplinary Studies Department.