Rose Silberman-Gorn

Artist Statement

For the last few years, I’ve focused on creating small freestanding and relief sculptures out of polymer clay. However, I’ve recently expanded my practice to include larger sculptures and textile works. I’m drawn to polymer clay because it is heavily associated with craft and childhood, which complements my themes. I became drawn to textiles due to the comforting feelings that tactility, volume, and softness can induce.

In my work, I utilize cute, cartoonish, childish imagery, developing my own creatures inspired by dolls, clowns, and other childhood iconography. I depict these characters in both heavily saturated and pastel colors, using soft, rounded, organic forms. Repeated motifs include houses, babies, eyes, and fire. 

Amidst the childish imagery are hints of something darker—uncomfortable sidelong glances, anthropomorphized objects, and umbilical cord-like tendrils emerging from stomachs. I often utilize distinct imagery in the stomach, such as a face or heart, as a means of conveying the contrast between internal and external emotions and identity. Central to my work is exploring the way that trauma can fracture emotions and identity, and how that relates to my own experiences and personal narrative. 

My sculptures symbolically depict emotional experiences I’ve gone through as a result of a traumatic upbringing with a narcissistic mother. My cute imagery makes the sometimes dark subject matter easier to digest, while also providing an unsettling contrast. I find building my visual language in order to reimagine my personal narrative to be very gratifying, cathartic, and healing.

Artist Bio

Rose Silberman-Gorn is a multidisciplinary artist currently based in Queens, New York. She exhibits work frequently, appearing in recent group shows at Local Project, Ethan Cohen Kube, and the Ely Center of Contemporary Art. She is currently working towards her MFA at Parsons School of Design.