Sound Scene XII at Hirshhorn

29.06.19 Sound Scene XII at Hirshhorn

@queerappalachia, @jrbrubaker & @gradientprojects installed at @hirshhorn this weekend as part of @sound.scene

from @queerappalachia —

I have a piece of art showing at The @smithsonian’s @hirshhorn opening this weekend. I am grateful to have the platform to talk about the opioid crises & Appalachian politics, especially where they intersect. We live in a time of digital news cycles & shorthand dog whistles like “Trump Country” that help keep #JDVance on the NYT bestseller list. It used to be every major media outlet had a “hot take” on Appalachia. Now, it feels like EVERYONE does. That’s why it’s important for Appalachians to make art & tell their own stories. On a personal note, opioid addiction & my body’s unique response to processing the Rx’s, Opioid Neurotoxicity has been the largest obstacles I have navigated in my life. Opioids help with my pain but I become untethered to reality. I live with a chronic debilitating painful auto immune disorder, pain management will be a huge part of my life the rest of my life. Trying to understand the treatment options that are available to me for pain management has meant that Opioid Neurotoxicity has been a predominate part of my life for the past decade . My relationship to opioids / how my body processes them has impacted every relationship in my life. Being able to make things has been the most healing & positive for me. From public art to homespun handmade work, making things helps me be present & in the moment. As an Artist that almost lost their life to opioids I support the work of @sacklerpain. PAIN has worked tirelessly to hold the Sackler family accountable for their role in the opioid epidemic as owners of #PurduePharmaceuticals. In the June @vanityfair interview with #DavidSackler, David said “the family’s philanthropy is being rejected”. ONLY @ prestigious cultural institutions. What David is really saying is no one will take our money that we want to give it to. The Sackler’s have never explored #opioidreperations. I get it, wings of international museums named after you is sexier than building back the communities that you profited from their literal #deathtoll.

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