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Childhood Amnesia

Emma Goodman

Stuffed Animals, Children's Clothing, Baby Blankets, Polyester Stuffing, Wool and Acrylic Yarn, 2022

Childhood Amnesia invites you into my re-imagined childhood bedroom, featuring bedsheets, wall color, books, and artwork from my youth. Within this installation, a handwoven blanket, composed of stuffed animals—some recycled, and some of my own—as well as children's clothing and baby blankets, is splayed out on top of the twin-sized bed. Troubled by blocks in my memory from ages three to ten and unable to revisit key moments, I began experimenting with mediums from my youth such as finger paints, crayons, and markers in an attempt to connect with my past self. I then began creating with fiber, and throughout the contemplative process of weaving with materials from childhood, memories from my past came flooding back to me as I entered a state of pre-adolescent reflection. A physical manifestation of my memories and thoughts is presented as a fiber sculpture composed of stuffed animal scraps and the polyester stuffing found within the stuffed animals. This sculpture contextualizes my process of making, allowing for a direct connection between the viewer and my process of physical deconstruction to result in memory reconstruction. My intent with this installation is to provide viewers with a feeling of nostalgia; I ask the viewer to follow along with my journey of recollection, urging them to confront blocks within their memories.