I often think about our private spaces and the different ways we present ourselves depending on who we interact with, including the raw emotion in the everyday routine that often gets overlooked, or hidden purposely. My latest body of work has been about turning the viewership onto myself, and the emotions I now run through with recent experiences of loss and grief. Through the use of sculpture and performance I am addressing universal experiences people share, even though my work is generated out of a very personal place. We are often conditioned to hide our emotions from others unless they are positive - and also to dismiss the ordinary unless it be considered extraordinary. I prefer to meditate on the seemingly insignificant repetitions of everyday routines and to appreciate them for what they are, the truest experiences of our lives without premeditation for presentation.
Through the use of neon and text I communicate "suggested commands" playing off the history of signage as a direct instruction to the viewer, inviting those who read my signs to act of their own volition.
The work is directly related to my identity as a feminist Jewish woman and the verbiage I have been conditioned and often expected to use as a form of politeness in order to phrase questions and appeals as nonthreatening requests.
Born and raised in Brooklyn, New York, Stephanie Sara Lifshutz received her MFA in 4D/time-based art at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2016. Growing up in a Modern-Orthodox Jewish household gave Lifshutz the desire to become involved in the Jewish Artist Lab in Madison, WI and serve as its artist-in-residence. Lifshutz pursues her art with an interdisciplinary approach, and incorporates that theme into her photography, printmaking, and sculpture, as well as her teaching practice. She has shown work nationally and has been awarded a Nissley Grant.