Joseph Wheeler

Cedarville University

Through my work, I focus on the relationships we create between the known and the unknown, as well as the self-created narratives we use to attempt to bridge the gulf between these two paradigms. Throughout my life, narratives and stories have dictated the way I consciously and unconsciously idealize myself. While I am not immediately capable of rationally expressing my entire role in the world, I cannot do otherwise than to rationally, or irrationally, assume some kind of order with regard to how I justify what I believe I am. My art is an attempt to further my understanding of what the tension in the known and unknown conception of self is, by pushing opposing associations I consider significant against each other. Conceptually, I aim to present the opposing ends of my perspective on the relationship between reality and delusion, birth and death, forgotten and remembered experiences, the symbolic and the imaginary, and the flesh and the spirit. I believe the process of reconciling with these "disagreements" comes about by bringing the unconscious into consciousness, but I believe that process should be taken on personally and in humility – both for the individual, and the community.
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