Lauren Mayer


I am drawn to the human tendency to physically and psychologically accumulate potent objects. Much of my work revolves around the idea that memory, with all its temporal shifts, attaches itself to the physical environment and the accumulated objects with which we surround ourselves like an ephemeral residue. Memory is a nebulous thing. I am intrigued by the amorphous chronology of remembering and its non-linear behavior in opposition to our customary human perception and experience of time. The arrow of time moves in one direction, always forward, but memory loops around time. It folds unto itself, speeds up and slows down and weaves around us, subtly haunting us with the slightest Proustian provocation – be it a letter stuffed away in a jean pocket, the smell of lilac, or a scuff on the wall. They are all conduits for memory, a way to expand our present, to weave in and out of time, regardless of tense. The objects we choose to keep and the space with which we fill them are extensions of our bodies, minds, and experiences beyond time.

I often reference architectural, domestic space and the modes of storage usually found within a home like a chest of drawers or shelving. I see this as an ordering of actual space, which could arguably be the physical manifestation of memory embedding itself in our spaces — of how memory is stored and retrieved in the spatial reliquary of our minds. I am particularly drawn to thresholds, both literal and metaphorical, like a wall, doorway, windowpane, or the line between public and private space, permanence and impermanence, past and present, perception and reality. These all represent the state of between, boundaries, or of division between worlds – the interstice where I see memory inhabiting. I imagine the construction of the walls of our homes as embedded with our memories, with the daily accumulation and sedimentation as evidence of time past. Our tangible clothes, bowls, cutlery, and furniture along with our seemingly intangible habits, routines, and thoughts become stratified bricks composing an historical core sample of our lives. These become part of a physical, psychological, and metaphorical architecture, one that, perhaps, memory would take if it assumed physical form.

— Lauren Mayer