Made for the exhibition "Strange Attractors" at the New Museum in New York City, which centered on the topic of chaos and chaos theory. "Comforter" is constructed as a bed quilt with a particular pattern silkscreen printed on the cotton fabric. The image is the result of a graphic combination using an optical illusion called the Fraser spiral illusion, first described by the British psychologist Sir James Fraser (1863–1936) in 1908. The overlapping black arc segments appear to form a spiral; however, the arcs are in fact a series of concentric circles. The Fraser spiral has a plaid-like pattern that, to me, was reminiscent of Leave It to Beaver's pajamas, which led me to the image of bed and home. The graphic is overlaid with images from the protesting crowds at Tianamen Square taken recently, and puffy clouds that bunched and roiled like the heads of the people. Hence the images depicted on the object of comfort are hardly comforting.
"Comforter" 1990, silkscreen on cotton/stuffing/satin, 68" x 86"