On the day before I was born, my mother went swimming at Ocean Beach. This is a record of the tide cycles that passed in the 9 months she was pregnant with me, a trace of saltwater, and my attempt to arrive at the color of the Pacific Ocean.
Some tidal events repeat every four hours and some every twenty thousand years.1
Mark-making and repetition are forms of wayfinding, means to locate myself in place and time. Beginning with writing, research, and drawing, I build through iteration and accumulation.
I use tactile processes to translate vast cycles and patterns, like ocean tides and the recurring full moon. Scientific and technological systems of charting and measuring the natural world, including calendars and predictive data, pass through my hands as scratches, hole punches, and watercolor marks onto 16mm film. I reinscribe subjectivity–my hand and body–into these systems, employed historically and in the present to explore, catalogue, and dominate the unknown. The material traces of my translations become temporary, digital video projections.
My paintings and drawings recompose a landscape or memory. Shifting between scales, I have been thinking about my sense of place within the flux of environmental change. As glaciers and the weather are mutating due to human impact, I look toward impassive cycles to reimagine congruence.
1 Jonathan White, Tides: The Science and Spirit of the Ocean, page 6.
Maxine Schoefer-Wulf is a writer and multimedia artist working in drawing, painting, film, and video. She uses mark-making and video projection to reimagine methods of charting the passage of time, exploring her sense of place and scale in relation to shifting landscapes and vast, impassive cycles. Born in San Francisco and raised in the Bay Area and Germany, she received her BA from University of California, Los Angeles and her MFA in Fine Arts from California College of the Arts. She has exhibited locally in the Bay Area and in Brooklyn, NY and was a finalist for the Barclay Simpson Award and recipient of the Dennis Leon and Christin Nelson Scholarship.