Art has a way of calling to the surface things that have yet to be articulated in a conscious way. “DAMAGED” was not the title I had chosen as I began developing my current body of work, but I knew that I wanted to use rips and tears in the art as a metaphor for the political division, media fragmentation, and general trans- gression that escalated severely during the last election cycle and have persisted since then. As I tackled a slew of top- ics including xenophobia, racial bias in policing and sentencing, the incompatible collision of capitalism and environmen- tal responsibility, Wall Street corruption, media disintegration, corporate brib- ery of politicians, and sexism, I realized that “DAMAGED” was, and is, the best word to honestly describe the state of these issues. “DAMAGED” is also the title of my favorite album by Black Flag, punk heroes of mine who swam upstream for their art and ideas. Though defining things as “DAMAGED” may sound dire, I think an honest diagnosis is the first step to waking up, recognizing, and then solving, problems. I refuse to accept the current state of things as the new normal!