An Idea Called Tomorrow

Ingrid von Sydow
November 25, 2009, 8:33 pm
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Ingrid von Sydow – The Production of Subjectivity, 2009

Image of "The Production of Subjectivity" by Ingrid von Sydow

Inspired by the optical illusion and religious significance of a Jacob’s ladder toy that she had as a child, artist Ingrid von Sydow created “The Production of Subjectivity” to question the exaltations and condemnations of Black hair.  The artist hopes that through this symbolism, people all over the world, but particularly those with “kinky” hair, come to accept the beautiful texture of their natural locks.

Ladders are symbols in many cultures of travel between spheres or planes of existence and especially connote an ascent into the heavens or a higher consciousness.  The rungs of a ladder represent the various stages of a person’s spiritual evolution to attain the goal of perfection or in the case of “Production of Subjectivity,” to achieve total acceptance of the unaltered self.

The Jacob’s ladder is one of the most ancient and famous of folk toys. Legend has it that one was found in King Tut’s tomb, which means these fascinating toys were played with in Egypt before 1352 B.C., when the young king died (at about 18 years old).

Ingrid von Sydow is a multimedia artist who uses sculpture, stand-alone sound, drawing, painting, printmaking and video.  Her artwork examines the political issues affecting marginalized people and in so doing aims to make palpable the subjective.  She has participated in a number of group shows in Los Angeles, New York City, Denmark and Iceland. She received her MFA and BFA from CalArts.