Eight months previous to my residency at Elsewhere Artist's Collaborative in Greensboro, NC, I had a vision: Toynado. This idea arrived complete within my mind- a sculptural installation set inside a room, though I had no idea if it was even logistically possible.
Upon my arrival at Elsewhere, almost a year later, I found very few toys represented in the massive collections and endless rooms of Elsewhere. I assumed the building of Toynado would not be possible. It was only later, in the middle of the night, as I conveyed my idea to an Elsewhere intern that I was informed of
“the baby-war room”.
The baby-war room was a disturbing attic room wherein the former matron of Elsewhere had kept only toys, hundreds if not thousands of them- before it had been turned into a museum. This room was so disturbing for most, people would not go in, and it had remained as it was, with the door firmly closed, until my arrival.
The radial cracks in the walls, and the plaster that seems blown off the ceiling by violent force was found, as-is. This perfect environmental frame seemed too good to be true.
More than any other work I have ever created, this one seemed driven by forces beyond myself. On the night of Toynado’s unveiling, two tornados touched down in Greensboro just before the opening.
This permanent installation can still be seen today at Elsewhere Artist's Collaborative, NC.