Originating from a smaller red space I made inspired by Matisse’s L’Atelier Rouge that I called my “red box,” out sprung this “red room.” Sitting in the foamcore box surrounded by pinned-up imagery was like sitting in my own mind. I had no idea what drove me to make the space or why my brain felt an instinctive attraction to particular images and texts, but that was the point: if I can put my mind on the walls then I can understand Anastasia. Don’t think, just do, follow your instincts.

(Scroll for more: the Book of Red: Volume 1 designed for the space, photos, original red box, and presentation notes that give a more in-depth explanation concerning photography, liminality, the color red, mugshots, red dots etc....)


Using Pinterest and Are.na for other author’s imagery and texts I found compelling, and Medium for my own words, I printed everything and tacked it to my studio wall. After a few months I filtered everything on the wall and scenes from Anastasia’s life through the latest addition to my project: the receipt camera, which takes photos and uses thermal technology to print them in black & white on regular receipt paper. After painting the room, I hung screenprints and countless receipt strips and this red room became Black & White & Red All Over. Anyone who visited was encouraged to use the camera and contribute images to the walls following their instincts.

The creation of this space felt like a labor of love and care and the hours spent painting the walls was exhausting but the process fit the concept. If this was “my mind on the walls,” it may as well have been my literal blood, sweat, and tears.

L’Atelier Rouge
Henri Matisse, 1911

    me in my red box
foamcore painted red & trimmed
saved to receipt camera mini sd card

original receipt photo on red room wall

original red box sketch

When we had to prepare our reflection presentation for the final review, I wrote mine in marker on small notepad pages at 6am, so what’s written below is very much true to whatever was floating in my mind as I finished the red room.

I’m a talker. I’ve always been told I have no filter, and it’s true: I do have a hard time knowing what will come out of my mouth. I read quickly, I think quickly, I talk quickly. Before I know it the conversation has landed miles away from where it started. My first point is that I’ll try to keep this as concise and on track as possible.

My second is the introduction to the exploration of my mind. As one would read for theatre:

Enter: Anastasia

My process could be called “Anastasia does what her brain tells her to and this is what happens”

I’m an overthinker. My motto recently has been “don’t think, just do.” I create my happiest work (or work that makes me happy to make and happy to see / have after) this way. When this work happens to be viewed by others, commentary always surprises me. Because I create in the moment, following subconscious commands, I don’t think farther than that and therefore I don’t think about my own thoughts or others’ / reactions for the aftermath.

All I know is the joy and flow when I follow the urge.

The number one comment is “unsettling”

Also have heard


I understand this pretty quickly once I work through the work from their POV, but it never ceases to surprise me. It’s a joyful surprise. There’s a process of ingesting information, experiences, living, and dropping what I’m doing when I have an idea I must follow (ex: bathroom video at senior show), then sharing, and taking in the commentary. These words, even though they’re about the work and RISD has taught me to successfully separate the critiques on the work and the self. But if the work feels so heavily tied to Anastasia, subconscious, instincts, the mind… then the commentary / feedback is helpful to understanding myself too.

This receipt camera came at such a good time (Easter with little cousins) and I was fascinated. I love cameras without digital displays. Give me less control so I can play around with it and not know the outcome till the image appears physically, right in the instant, or a few days  later from Kerry's Photo Warwick. The love and care I feel developing film and printing photos in the darkroom carried over into the joy for the images that can’t be replicated so easily, like Polaroids and film rolls. The precious quality that I think everyone understands about the medium is heightened for me from my anxieties about losing memories, losing the images of my life. I won’t be going through 20,000 photos on my phone to pick from tons of iterations of similar photos for a photo box, but the physicality inherent to instant and film photography chooses the images I’ll have to look back at when I’m 50. I’m either forced to get them printed or it prints right before my eyes.

final presentation to the class with advisor & guest critics
(color photos saved onto receipt cameras)

I used a lot of disposable cameras this senior year at RISD, but my Polaroid camera remained untouched for months because of the cost of film, even though I might prefer Polaroid because it feeds my impatient nature.

The receipt camera was a dream come true. 50 mini receipts rolls for $20. Granted you might also get cancer (and least that’s what a few have told me). Now I had no anxiety about how much “film” I used. I could document the “stupid” stupid–like my books, my hand, the familiar street sign; the things that don’t always show the passage of time like taking photos of the people in your life and yourself.

These photos are the closest thing to stepping into my brain and seeing through Anastasia’s eyes:

My Mind On The Walls
At my studio desk this semester I started printing out all the images and words that were on my mind, whether they were others’ or my own. I had been using a secret Pinterest board to upload any image that made me go “oooh” and the website Are.na that acted as my Pinterest for words–quotes from books and articles that also made me “oooh.”

I had a collection of instinctive attractions and tacking them all on the studio wall helped me make some sense of the inner workings of Anastasia’s brain. Why do I like what I like? Why do I choose what I choose?

Trying to investigate my own brain’s inner workings has been extremely confusing. Along the way I’ve tried to counter-act all this with my “don’t think, just do” line, but by thinking about not overthinking, and thinking about thinking, I am very much overthinking.

I’ll think I’ve drawn patterns in my work and the imagery / words I put on the wall, but all I can conclude is that this brain is full of contradictions.

firstly because of the receipts and the space’s main color, but also as a reflection on my proclivity to black and white thinking that I’ve been pushed so much towards disrupting and “sitting with discomfort,” I now find myself floating in the grey zone, the liminal space. I’m not sure of anything except that my favorite color is red, and even that only became a thing three years ago (I used to choose a random color when people would ask).

SO, MY MIND IS ON THE WALLS, for me, and for you.

You see what I see, and I want to see what you see. I’ve brought my receipt camera here as a fixture of the installation, for everyone to have fun with. Just as I’ve taken pictures of anything and everything around me, you’re invited to do the same. I’ve also brought the red dots I used to stick to anything notable, whether I loved or hated what I marked it with. As far as I can tell, Anastasia’s practice is a process of understanding Anastasia and I know it’ll be a joy to see what everyone chooses to mark within the space, with receipts and red dots. This is helpful to me in my continual process of understanding myself, so as a little gift, feel free to take pictures with you if you leave any for the space.

This installation is meant to be interactive and fun, so let’s hang out a little bit in Anastasia’s mind, then discuss.



︎︎︎BOOK OF RED: VOL. 1︎︎︎
printed book (white cover) in red room

*note : Advisor name should be Kelsey Dusenka, not Kelsey Elder

both of the receipt cameras 16gb mini SD cards  save digital color versions of every receipt photo taken, & I dump these images sporadically as “backups”
they include the photos taken in this room ! check them out, you might just find yourself

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