Amanda Le Kline

Artist Statement

My work considers the peculiar relationship that humans have with nature, a force that is both sublime and terrifying. There is a primal urge to be at one with nature, yet, food, housing, and digital technology increasingly disconnect humans from nature. Though my artwork I draw attention to the ways in which we satisfy our desire to be close to nature by constructing spaces that highlight artifice in both objects and in the ways that bodies exist in nature.

When I ponder my own relationship with nature, there is a tension that exists within the disparate elements of my identity. I come from a lowbrow type of culture; a working class family who enjoy hunting and fishing. I was born and raised in a trailer set deep in the forest of Eastern Central Pennsylvania. In this type of community, nature is integrated into domestic spaces in specific and deliberate ways. An example is seen in the mounting of a six-point buck as a wall ornament, transforming the animal into an inanimate object of beauty and reverence.

The world I live in as an adult, amidst the brick cityscape of Columbus, Ohio, is totally different, resulting in a friction between my past and present. In my adolescence, the trailer and its class associations embarrassed me, but I am now nostalgic and proud of my roots. The artwork I produce makes amends for my misgivings, and reveres the places that are pictured. I create spaces where the domestic and natural world intersect and coexist. The work gives me space to ponder questions regarding my own identity and allows me to situate myself within the larger examination of humans in nature.