medium: installation art
wisconsin academy gallery artist, 2002
maoas participant 2007
Click on the image to see the full version.
My artwork is installation oriented; I am more interested in creating a public environment to be collectively experienced rather than an art object to be privately possessed. I suspend and arrange many objects and substances that stimulate questions about locations of authority, forces of ambition, ideas on health, and addiction versus desire with the United States, which is a highly competitive and consumption-obsessed society. I search for the complex relationships between many pressing sociopolitical themes in our current society. Racism, classism, sexism, the medical and pharmaceutical industry, and environmental costs of human consumption are all issues that I have looked at in my work. Questions with large social implications are often present in my art, but the beginning point in most of my work is the untangling of desires within my own life. From that point I expand my understanding to encompass the larger implications for society. My work is accessible to a wide audience because of the familiar and metaphorically-charged objects. These visual poems inspire people to ponder multitudes of questions and simultaneously marvel at their elegance, playfulness and intricate, often precarious balance.
My paintings are meditative and improvisational mental maps. They reflect my mental activity about the world. They are pure exploration. They are about flow of ideas, growth, playfulness, contagion, biology, social structure and communication. They are my desire to balance randomness and control. They are my musings about the natural world and the world of human constructs--and my attempt to understand the relationship between the two.
Beth Racette is a visual artist, arts educator and arts organizer. Her work is primarily installation art focusing on social structure and personal themes of transformation. She has also been doing very bright, non-objective paintings whose themes are flow, creativity and interconnectedness. In 1991-92 she received the New Jersey State Council for the Arts Fellowship in Sculpture. She directed The Women's Health Show which was an extravaganza of arts, cultural and education events which took place in New York City in 1994. She has served on the National Board of Directors for the Women's Caucus for Art and, as such, traveled with the WCA delegation to the Non-Governmenal Organization Forum of the 4th World Conference on Women in Beijing, China. She currently lives in Madison, where she administrates education and community programs at the Madison Civic Center.