What Comes to Mind
By Joyce Cutler-Shaw
San Diego, California: Joyce Cutler-Shaw, 2013. Edition of 15 series variants.

5.875 x 4.25"; extends to 5.75" deep. Modified tunnel book or square fold book. Digital prints. Signed and numbered by the artist. Banded closure.

Joyce Cutler-Shaw: "The human body is the matrix of the human condition. With its long history of depiction, the human body remains a frontier, still being re-defined, with the brain, its formation and functions, at the forefront of neurological and neurobiological research. The invitation to develop new work for the exhibition, Seeing Ourselves, which included a comprehensive brain scan, has generated an extensive project ... The invitation was a provocation. It was

  • to realize with awe and wonder that the world and the cosmos are both of and beyond our cognition
  • that the, more or less, three pound, skull encased, embodied structure, the brain, in its marvelous complexity, is what defines and propels us
  • that the emerging and compelling subject/theme, inspired by this initial project for the exhibit, Seeing Ourselves, is the visual translation of the evolution of human consciousness, that is, what it means to be human. It is a continuing project that I have titled, What Comes To Mind."

"What comes to mind is that we are temporal, in a continual now. The past is memory, translated to ... tunnel books with brain scan movies, and memory pictures, as if in a wonderland of images in the mysterious realm of consciousness, of origins still unexplained."

What Comes to Mind has a scan of the artist's brain on the back panel with an image of her artwork on each side of the tunnel. It is the artist's way of showing how the brain accumulates images from the past. There are 15 books in this edition, each with a different set of images.