Desire Paths looks at makers within the discourse of craft and those existing on the periphery of the craftscape who focus on the movement of the body towards something desirable. These desires of the body are in relationship to nature, technology, self, and society. Using architectural theory and queer curatorial strategies, Desire Paths examines the possibilities and futures of bodies, revealing connections between the corporeal and craft.
“Desire paths,” a term taken from urban planning, are lines trodden in the landscape when constructed walkways do not provide a direct or desired route. Through action, repetition, and intentionality, desire paths are crafted modifications to the landscape that allow for a body to move towards a horizon. The format of the works include traditional craft media, performance, video, and interactive web-based work. Through this variety of media and performative tactics the makers in Desire Paths consider how we view, value, and ascribe meaning to a body/the body/the others body. They show us the power and agency held in body and present us with crafted visions of the body that confront and expand expectations.
The works in this exhibition reclaim the concept of craft from its historical associations with the decorative, frivolous, feminine, indigenous, and the other. The makers use the medium of craft, and the action of crafting, to produce powerful representations and counter narratives to dominant culture.