Kirsten Telhiard

Inside the Box
modeling clay, acrylic paint, moss, dirt

My piece consists of a miniature construction site where a building is being pieced together with clear boxes full of miniature clay people. A crane lowers a box to the ground next to two boxes already stacked on top of one another. The site is made up of dirt and grass.

The artwork was inspired by Chinese artist Cao Fei, who concentrates on the rapid urbanization that China has been undergoing since the 1980’s. It portrays what could happen to the mental health of people if overpopulation and urbanization persist at the same rate they are now. 

This piece depicts the effects that urbanization and overpopulation have on the mental state of humans. People are beginning to be shoved into buildings in urban areas as their economy grows stronger, and in this process they lose their identities. Hence, the miniature clay figures in this piece are completely featureless. The clay figures are somewhat morphed together, and it is difficult to tell where one body begins and another ends. This essentially serves as a fear factor for viewers; if overpopulation is not controlled, this scenario could eventually be the outcome of humanity.