My work is about…
I am an artist who explores the contemporary body. I investigate its presence, both on the individual and the social level. Individually, everyone imagines a projected idea about their physical body: its interior structure and its exterior surface. This placeholder image, or set of images, is created from social ideas about health and beauty. I question the false nature of this image, I distort and play with its physical truth.
I use materials that evoke and behave like the body — flexing and stretching, shriveling and wrinkling elastic media like nylon, and plastic to form abstract sculpture. The materials are as artificial as the ideas they represent. The human body has become a material to be shaped, sculpted, and objectified. In an inverse way, I humanize material to discuss ideas about selfhood, augmentation, and the dynamic context of one’s bodily experience.
My work ruminates on the value system applied to the body. American culture places the female form under specific scrutiny, encourages it to compete with others, and associates moral identity with body shape, size, and color. Along with a daily barrage of images from every media outlet depicting ideal beauty, these pressure points continue to push women into spaces controlled by society. My artistic practice disassembles this complex power structure, so we may observe and critique its illegitimate authority.
Emily Elhoffer is an emerging sculptor working in the Midwest. She has shown in St. Louis, Kansas City, and Milwaukee, juried public art and private gallery shows, and hosted panel discussions on artmaking and technology. After graduating from Kansas City Art Institute in 2015, she moved to St. Louis where she is working to build a fabrication facility for fellow artists and fabricators. Her work is currently represented by Var Gallery in Milwaukee.
2015 Kansas City Art Institute. Bachelors in Fine Arts: Sculpture
2010 Washington University in St. Louis. Directed Study: Painting
2017 Co-Founder and Creative Director of MADE
2017 Juror for Craft Alliance, Residency Program
2017 Panel Leader, The Art of Making, Venture Cafe
2017 Juror for Sarah Street Foundation, R.F.P.
2015 Instructor and Curatorial Assistant, St. Louis Artists Guild
2014 Studio Assistant for Studio’s, Inc.
2014 Workshop Instructor at Kansas City Art Institute
2019 Fred and Mildred Carpenter Award. St. Louis.
2015 McKeown Grant. Kansas City.
2010 Best in Painting. Washington University, St. Louis.
2019 Art is Distortion. Jacoby Arts Center, Alton, IL.
2019 St. Louis University Invitational Exhibition. McNamee Gallery, St. Louis.
2019 Consider Me, Consider You. Var West, Milwaukee.
2019 In the Flesh: Emily Elhoffer Solo Show. Erica Popp Gallery, St. Louis.
2018 XXXIV The Exhibition. Art St. Louis, St. Louis.
2018 Lifetime Warranty. Macklind Appliance, St. Louis.
2018 Resolve. Intersect Arts Gallery, St. Louis.
2016 Creatures. Art St. Louis Gallery, St. Louis.
2015 22 August. Old Orchard Gallery, St. Louis.
2014 Untitled. Volker Building. Kansas City.
2013 Bevy. Volker Building. Kansas City.
2013 From Here To Where. Destination Gallery, Kansas City.
2013 Objects and Spaces. Volker Building, Kansas City.
2013 39th Interval. 39th Street and Main, Kansas City.
2019 Five Local Artists Who Celebrate Human Form by Lauren Smith, ALIVE.
2018 Volume 7, Friend of the Artist.
2019 Brain Storms, permanent installation. The Magic House, St. Louis.