For the past 15 years my art has been transitioning. Since I got to college, I have been learning who I am as an artist and building a stronger connection with art.

I feel that after four years, I have just a hint of who I am as an artist and what my preferences, or styles, are in regards to how I approach various projects. So far, art has allowed me to be much more open with myself and with the world around me. I am still learning how to integrate all of my interests into one another and take my art one step further than before.

My work consists of painting, film photography, textile art, and graphic design. I feel that each of these mediums has helped me uncover new discoveries about myself. I have learned that I can be a very fun and outgoing person but I can also be very introverted and seclude myself from others at times. This is apparent in my work. Some of my art seems like it came from a very ambitious extrovert person while the rest seems more intimate and quiet. These projects create a space for me to exert characteristics of how I want to be in my personal life at times: funny, quirky, outgoing, sassy, etc.

I’ve also discovered that I have a deep love for conceptual art and art that makes you feel or experience something – whether that’s humor, pain, anxiety, etc. — while you are looking at it and analyzing it. This leads me to my most recent work, For Your Eyes Only, which is my senior thesis project. For Your Eyes Only is a collaged quilt made of my old diary pages, antidepressant pills, personal thoughts, imagery, and paper work concerning my depression. This piece is a conceptual art work that reflects my various emotional, physical, and spiritual experiences that I have endured as a person diagnosed with depression. This project is the epitome to my journey as an artist and is also the highest peak of vulnerability that I have ever experienced. The purpose of the quilt was to be able to express my positive and negative experiences that I’ve had with depression through healing and meditation while allowing myself to be vulnerable to my audience. The sewing and the content I was sewing onto the quilt was all representative of my own self-healing and meditative process.

Art has made its indent on my heart and my life. Through using art as a tool to examine my own behavior and health, I have made significant progresses with my depression and have gained a deeper appreciation of myself. “Art is not supposed to change the world, to change practical things, but to change perceptions. Art can change the way we see the world. Art can create an analogy.” That quote by French artist, JR, stays with me as inspiration to keep hope and keep creating.

Made with the sweet hands of DaJaniere Rice © 2017