Year Graduated: 2018
Emily Short was born, raised, and predominantly educated in rural Northwest Ohio. Growing up on her family farm nurtured an interest in art and animals that carried through to college. She attended Bowling Green State University in Bowling Green, Ohio where she earned her BFA in two-dimensional studies with an emphasis in printmaking in 2014. In 2015 Emily was accepted into the MFA program at University of South Dakota. At USD, she continued learning printmaking and art theory, which she continues to combine with her interest in humananimal relationships to create her artwork. Emily’s future plans involve applying to artist residencies, continuing to expand her knowledge of artistic methods by attending artist workshops, and reading lots of books.
My work explores the space that children and family pets occupy and create. I see children and pets as matching intervals on either side of the animal-human binary, with pets being domesticated animals, and children being “less domesticated’ humans in terms of societal conditioning. These prints portray the many playful and ambiguous aspects of child-pet interactions where the roles and structures of power are rarely fixed. Family pets are often the first teachers and playmates for children in their household, leaving memories that can be tender or distressing, but enduring nonetheless. This work seeks to provoke the viewer into constructing a narrative to contextualize the given images by drawing on memory and imagination. It is often said that things are “etched” in our memories. As part of my work seeks to draw on memories, the process of drawing and etching copper plates was most appropriate to facilitate my concept. By leaving the background of the portrayed scenes blank, viewers are given room to provide their own context as to what these children and pets are doing, where they interacting, and why. I employ cropping and perspective to encourage the feeling of being just outside the boundary of the interactive space being held between the pet and child.