woman with long dark brown hair in a black t-shirt, shoulders up
Alex Rose

Bio

Alex Rose is an artist who creates work which considers and cares about each human’s various interactions with their surroundings and encourages the idea of play. She simultaneously creates for those with special needs and those without, looking to help establish a moment and place to build stronger relationships and understandings between the two perceived sides. Emphasis is placed on respecting and learning from each individual’s unique response to their surroundings. 

She received her BFA from Endicott College in 2021 and is an Intermedia MFA candidate at the University of Maine with an anticipated graduation of summer 2024. As an MFA student Alex’s work focussed on consideration for accessibility and her practice was refined as she completed her graduate certificate in Interdisciplinary Disability Studies. She continues to embrace experimentation and exploration in her work as she strives to build connections and promote unity in her audience through shared experience. 


Artist Statement

“disjuncture theory redistributes disability as belonging to everyone, another part of human diversity, and thus humanness literacy… Instead of asking what is wrong with my body or your attitude, disjuncture unreads and rereads disability as inability to complete a desired undertaking and then forensically interrogates why the task cannot be done. The why opens infinite responses from simple to complex, from no tech to high tech.”

(Elizabeth DePoy & Stephen French Gilson, 2022)

 

Alex Rose is a painter, sculptor, and mixed media installation artist that works to create spaces and moments of understanding through shared art and play. She makes works that allow an overstimulating space feel more comfortable, and she makes work that can break away from the traditional gallery and enter into a more familiar and accessible setting. It is important to Alex to make art which can meet each individual audience member where they are comfortable and highlight the similarities between humans who may have initially seen differences as barriers.

As a way to break down some of these perceived barriers and present access points, Alex looks to the disjuncture model of disability for guidance. Learned through disability studies, she uses a definition of disability that originates from the disjuncture model where any one is believed to be disabled at any point in their life when they fail to complete a task. With the mindset that disability does happen to everyone, Alex examines spatial limitations and inaccessibilities, working to allow as many people to feel considered and respected in their individual forms of operating, processing, and communicating. An emphasis on tactility and participatory components in her work help to foster an intuitive exploration through the senses, learning more about the surrounding spaces and people.  


Previous Works

a collage of 4 images in a row showing 4 different people moving pieces in a large sliding board artwork mounted onto the wall

How can I get there? (2023)

How can I get there? is an participatory sliding board where users consider the range of in-accesibilities humans face with transportation everyday and the lack of answers there are to healing such disjunctures. The work serves as a critique and demonstates the impossibility of universal design with one person’s attempted navigation of the maze further entangling someone elses; and, also bringing into question societies “understanding” of humanness. 

a marron and white patchwork hoodie made with square patterns to make up this hoodie that is displayed on a dress form in front of a white wall

Understated Statement Piece (2023)

Understated Statement Piece is a performative wearable which takes the form of an oversized hoodie and allows all users to navigate the pockets with ease as they are lined with different textures and marked with unique buttons. Those who are visually impaired, sensory seeking, or perhaps searching for their keys in the dark can access these pockets without making a spectacle of themself.

5 abstract shaped boards upholstered and installed in a group, 2 on the wall and 3 on the floor, each in a different textured fabric in some shade of blue

Sensation (2022)

Sensation is a collection of custom sensory boards each upholstered in their own unique texture and paired with a companion pillow to match the cutout in the middle of the board. Welcoming a wide audience to comfortably play, some boards are hung at different heights while other boards are free to migrate with the pillows, and move with participants, to more accessible locations for play.

little girls legs sticking out of a sensory swing with a fabric wrap designed to look like a koala

Gabby’s Swing (2022)

Gabby’s Swing is a personalized sensory swing made for and with the guidance of a little girl with autism. The swing combines function and aesthetic as it empowers its users to foster relationships and understanding through moments of shared play.