On Opposition, Tangibility, and Annihilation: An Interview with Hannah Leja Epstein by Alison Harvey

As part of my curatorial work at the MAL, I link artists to theorist for interviews on various media arts and media archaeology topics.

On Opposition, Tangibility, and Annihilation: An Interview with Hannah Leja Epstein by Alison Harvey

January 30, 2014

Hannah’s artistic practice is simultaneously fascinating and confounding, spanning analogue (including rug hooking) and digital media (such as digital games and video), and exploring themes that might seem on the surface surprisingly divergent, from cyborgs to intellectual property to prison exploitation films. We exchanged a series of emails delving into her visions, dreams, and praxis.

Alison Harvey: Who are you and what do you do?

Hannah Leja Epstein: I am a super cute chaos machine – light. I create middle-of-the-road mischief- <3 <3 <3.

AH: Where did you come from and where are you going?

HLE: I come from a kaleidoscopic multi-lens perspective, stemming from the divergent duality of a Latvian mother and Ashkenazi father. I believe that being cast in oppositional histories has directed me on a path of perpetual reconciliation. As such, I feel I am zooming towards a creative moment of concisely devastating action. Conceptual annihilation of division, that is if the forecast stays clear.

AH: Why are you so promiscuous in your use of media formats? What do your diverse platforms share and how do they differ? Do you have a favorite mode?

HLE: I am slutty in every aspect of my life.

I think that possessing a variety of creative avenues is a way of remaining flexible in uncertain times. I like to think that if one mode of expression were to take off then I would wholly devote myself to it but that is likely just wishful thinking as unpredictable behavior and interests is a characteristic of my self that I have come to accept and know, that managing it requires a lack of formal direction or containment in a single sphere.

I don’t know if my diverse platforms necessarily share anything except that I have access and proficiency with them.

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