Broken Heart Art Cards 2.0
Ink jet prints, heart confetti, handwritten letters, envelopes
For Animating the Archives: The Woman's Building, a Metabolic Studio Special Project in Archiving
Los Angeles, CA
Broken Heart Art Cards 2.0 is a reinterpretation of original Womanhouse artist Mary Linn Hughes’ Broken Heart Art Cards, 1984, and part of a fellowship with The Woman’s Building and a collaboration with artist Maryam Hosseinzadeh. Memes, postcards, and posters present the current discourse around identifying “trouble signs” in romantic relationships while drawing a parallel to President Donald Trump and his administration’s language and gaslighting tactics.The new iteration of the project plays off of Hughes’ original humor, playfulness, and ability to connect to the universal struggle for love and acceptance in relationships and within ourselves.
The 2017 edition of Broken Heart Art Cards centers around president Donald Trump and his administration as an abusive lover and present parallel signs of emotionally abusive behavior in domestic relationships with the unhealthy relationship the administration creates with its citizens. “Gaslighting,” a common practice among domestic abusers to fool their victim into disbelieving their own reality aligns characteristically with the language Trump has used when speaking about allegations towards him of sexual abuse. Institutional gaslighting is used to disillusion the public in order to subtly take control of domestic politics also parallels a strategy used by the Trump Administration during press conferences and public speaking engagements.
This updated version of the project uses humor and bold graphic design to connect with viewers. Memes are distributed via the @brokenheartartcards Instagram account and take on a life of their own. In Hughes’ original project, she cathartically mailed postcards to friends to cope with the end of a relationship. In the same manner, Hosseinzadeh and I mail our postcards to friends, family, and colleagues as a way to vent our frustrations with politics and relationships. Large printed images of the memes were framed and displayed in the exhibition, Animating the Archives: The Woman’s Building, a Metabolic Studio Special Project in Archiving (2017). This version of the project also included a mailing station where handwritten postcards were mailed across the country, some even addressed to members of Congress.