Since becoming one of the many unfortunate victims of Hurricane Ike, Ann Wood has been making pieces that are loosely about objects or events that can “get you” or “spoil” your day. A subtle undercurrent in her newest work has also been the idea of the food chain and how danger is relative: a bird is wonderful to look at unless, of course, you are a worm. While nature has always informed Wood’s work, the idea of the food chain, looming danger in seemingly innocent situations, and the uneasiness that comes with that knowledge has begun to take on new meaning and increasing importance because of her own new-found sense of vulnerability.
Spoiler is a site-specific installation in the Mezzanine Gallery. Ann Wood creates most of her work using thread, foam, rubber, and fake objects like insects, hunting decoys, fruits, and flowers. The ideas of scrapbooking, sewing, “women’s work,” and nurturing are important for Wood and give the piece a quirky sense of humor.
“With Spoiler, I am thinking about how ants, in their quickness to rebuild, represent ambition and drive…if you destroy their hill they begin to rebuild immediately. I am also thinking about ‘ants in the pants’ and how that silly, light-hearted saying is used to signify a general sense of uneasiness. And of course, the cliché of ants spoiling a picnic is an obvious reference. The word spoiler is also used to describe an ending that has been prematurely given away. That’s important, too, as this installation includes a lot of clues as to the ‘ending’ before you reach the Mezzanine Gallery.”–Ann Wood