Emmett Donovan

From the perspective of both a graphic designer and artist, I approach my work as a way to communicate a message. The pieces I create are vessels with one main purpose: transfer an idea from myself to you, the viewer. I view this as the core purpose of my work.

However, the assigned value of my work is a much more complicated discussion.

The dispute over “value” is one that both inspires me as much as it holds me back. In some ways, seeking to be considered “valuable” motivates me to push boundaries and create in new, innovative ways.

The question then becomes: Who decides what is valuable?

I believe that value is decided by the individual. Any attempt to assign a broad definition to what is “valuable” is impossible. What makes something valuable will come from within each person, and everyone will have a different understanding of the term. From the tallest trees on earth to the bacterium within them, there is purpose, meaning, and belonging.

Whether that purpose is valuable to one specific individual or not is irrelevant. That purpose exists if you can look close enough to find it.

Take, for example, the bugs around you. On first assumption, many think of bugs as having little purpose. Many approach them with an automatic attitude of distaste, disgust, or even hate. Bugs are the perfect example of looking at value in its most shallow level. Engaging with the lives of these creatures on a more personal, tactile level may illuminate their purpose, which is so often left shrouded in ignorance.

So through the creation of this set of works, I was able to reconsider the ways that these simple creatures have value. To reframe the conversation in a way that exhibits the values of these lives that we often know very little about.