St. Thomas professor creates her own candyland

Artist Kim Vose Jones explored human’s most material desires through candy and childhood.

(Kim Vose Jones/ Facebook)
(Kim Vose Jones/ Facebook)

Vose Jones’ instillation Candyland: The Sky is Falling was on display as part of a three-artist exhibition entitled Covet at the Andrew and Laura McCain Art Gallery from Jan. 9 to Feb. 7.

The part-time St. Thomas University professor, along with Deanna Musgrave and Andrew Reed Miller, developed the exhibit Covet after they found themselves questioning what it means for a heart to long for, crave or posses something.

“It sort of morphed into a conversation about beauty and desire, ideas of loss and transformation and a little bit about the sublime. It becomes specifically about the multifaceted concept about indulging in your desires,” says Vose Jones.

Each artist then explored the idea and interpreted it in a different way. Vose Jones created Candyland: The Sky is Falling, which was inspired by things like Christina Rezeti’s poem Goblin Market, Nick Ut’s infamous photo The Terror of War and the stories of Hans Christen Anderson.

The instillation includes real and fake candy and a mannequin wearing a vintage unicorn mask with birthday candles growing out of its back. Vose Jones describes it as an explosive sparkly pink post-apocalyptic frenzy intended to draw the viewer in.

Candyland is all about the covering up or the hidden truths of our global situation and the tension of looking at these difficult and troubling times. It’s meant to offer sort of a glimpse into troubling cultural decadence of abundance.”

Like her past instillations, Vose Jones creates each piece twice. All of her work is made in studio first, but the instillation itself doesn’t get made until she reaches the gallery space.

“I’ll make multiple objects that may not make it into the final instillation because I respond very much to the space I’m in and so there’s that second making in the space all the time.”

Vose Jones is interested in drawing people to her work and seeing how they respond with their own ideas and attitudes towards desire. Even though the instillation is dark in nature, it’s also meant to be playful and comforting through its uses of childhood references.

“All of these things are very comforting sometimes. I think that’s part of what I’m interested in – bringing the more troubling and darker ideas that I’m engaged with in a more approachable manner.”

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