Behind the Veil: Tapestries of Eastern Europe

These collages are based on my personal experiences exploring Central and Eastern European cities. My work explores the patterns that emerge from the unique, built environment of each city. These patterns are shaped by complex histories and altered each day by the gestures, actions, and footsteps. I spent the spring semester of 2018 at Corvinus University in Budapest. I traveled to Hungary so I could explore the cities and cultural identities of Central and Eastern Europe. My father’s roots lay in Belarus and Lithuania, and my mother’s parents immigrated as refugees from Romania. As someone with Eastern European heritage, I wanted to learn more about these places and their vibrant cultures, which diverge from those in Western Europe, and often remain unknown to the world outside their doors.  With each new city I went to, I spent hours wandering the streets and photographing architectural details unique to that place. I photographed thousands of details that caught my eye, from cathedrals to graffiti, lampposts to coffee cups. I also absorbed the dense ornament of the architecture and the traditional clothing, which I have drawn onto and woven into my work. My collages of these images are not meant to simplify their identities and stories, but to draw attention to the elements that exemplify their organic architectures and the history that has shaped each of them.

Click on any of the tapestries below for a closer look and the stories behind them.

 
 
 
Installation view of all six tapestries.

Installation view of all six tapestries.

 
 
 
 

Click on any of the tapestries at the top of the page for more details like these!