Phantom Trigger
Image Credit: Sarah Cooke

Join us Saturday, March 23, 2019, 6:00-8:00 pm for the opening reception of Sarah Cooke's MFA Thesis Phantom—Trigger. Light refreshments will be served. The event is free and open to the public; all are welcome to attend. RSVP.

Artist's Stament:

"Becoming comfortable in the (dis)comfort of trauma seems to be an insurmountable effort. In Phantom–Trigger., I seek to campaign for cognitive resilience by reliving, reorienting, and sharing my moments of powerlessness. By creating a space in which your actions are controlled, but not manipulated, I’m given the opportunity to construct an area of recreational vitality for myself.

In a Role Playing Game (RPG) you assume the character of another and take on their life as your own. Once you are placed in this game, you are then met with a world you are to interact with. You’re led down a path of actions specifically created by a gaming engineer and designer. You embody this character that they’ve invited you to become, to journey through a space they created for you to be in, to ultimately become victorious on a quest and win your prize. You do all of this willingly in the name of fun and entertainment.

In my work, sound, light, material, and atmospheric experiences become indispensable for your sensorium activation. In your willingness to go through my “game,” I investigate your human ability, or inability, to be vulnerable, as well as my own. With this – I hope that healing can be obtained."

Within the broad spectrum of materials that she uses, Sarah Cooke openly explores her past traumas and life experiences through works that incorporate multi-sensory elements such as textures, sounds, scents, and videos. Sarah is an installation artist originally from Charleston, S.C. and currently resides in Washington, D.C. She started painting at a young age. During and after receiving her BFA in 2012, Sarah evolved her practice to include more metal smithing and sculptural works—eventually bringing her to a place of sculptural installations. Sensorium activation has always been part of her practice in selecting materials and environments. Sarah has been heavily influenced by the Spanish architect Antoni Gaudí, comic books, video games, and Saturday morning cartoons from her childhood—specifically Scooby-Doo. Her love of gaming and illustration attracts her to artists such as J.R.R. Tolkien and Jeff Easley.

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