The Soap Factory: 3x5 Residency



Three-by-Five. Five, one month long, residencies lead by three artist coordinators selected from Soap Factory alumni or other highly-regarded artist leads. The artist coordinators hosted one or more emerging artists of their own choosing in one of our first floor galleries. After each opening event, selected writers reviewed the work which released in a series of books for visitors.


Content warning: violence against Black lives


Design that describes an imperfect system

In July 2016, there were multiple police shootings including Alton Sterling in Louisiana, Philando Castile in Minnesota, and police officers in Dallas were attacked during a protest, killing five officers and injuring nine others.


Artists within the residency reacted to the events and surrounding environment. I wanted to inform readers about the exhibited work while also being empathetic to recent events. To do so, I researched Wabi-Sabi design principles.


Wabi-Sabi represents Japanese aesthetics and a Japanese world view centered on the acceptance of transience and imperfection. The aesthetic is sometimes described as one of beauty that is “imperfect, impermanent, and incomplete”. It is a concept derived from the Buddhist teaching of the three marks of existence, specifically impermanence, suffering, and emptiness or absence of self-nature

I appreciate the creative freedom that The Soap Factory allowed to make this happen. Using Wabi-Sabi design principles with heavy content provides a visual space for readers to meditate and contemplate the subjects.