Adams presents a deeper miniature biography about the young, free-spirited Adrienne.
by Zach Adams
Slaydrienne Sledge hammered open the portal of life in the spring of 1991 to a pair of gorillas – married on Halloween in gorilla costumes, Porter and Lucinda did not know what would occur with this birth. Spilling out into jungle life, just outside the snack food city of York, Pa., the barely human Slayge’s birth was sensed by other beasts and soon condemned unnatural. Though it may have been, her arrival signaled a transformation of life soon to come. Helplessly hostile to change, the beasts scorned the spirit they knew lay within the yet infantile creature.
The uncontrollable rage drawn from this ape child inspired warfare against the family. As a reprieve from guerilla tactics, the Jewish Community Center nearby, and the gentle employees therein, welcomed the beast among men. Here, she first explored her youthful, creative intuitions. Fascinated by cartoons as art against the backdrop of her arboreal existence, the sights she saw on the picture screens ushered her into modernity and surrealistic thinking with Ah! Real Monsters, Ka Blam, and Invader Zim.
Continual daytime observation prevented Adrienne from wild activity, at the JCC and later in school. Her roots lying in the jungle would not betray her, though. With the moon commandeering the sky, acts of gore and battle dominated the now adolescent artist’s life. She never shied from her barbarous nature when choosing companions. Her pack consisted of malicious, felonious beings inflicting misdeeds in the small world of pretzels and Peppermint Patties. These slaughterhouse scenes inspired her to paint and sculpt images of demise and disaster during this early period. While nights were her own, Adrienne excelled in daytime courses of drawing, painting, and ceramics at the suburban high school of York just outside the vine-filled confines where she belonged. No textbook could have survived the cave she called home, however.
Steve’s greatest, beastliest work may have been just that cavernous home. A periwinkle, mauve, and peach domicile filled with autobiographical bits of sordid jungle life. Sartorial savagery cluttered the empty spaces between chewed gum, Leftover Crack posters, bands’ promotional flyers, empty energy drinks, and sharpie-drawn graffiti. Memory-filled shit of a Punk Princess ape-child thrown at a wall was the culmination of mischievous life inside the jungle. This cave became a cage for Steve, in time, overcrowded with animalia and otherwise. As Capote taught us, you can never cage a wild thing. So, Steve would chose not to follow the seasons, but follow the natal impetus of artistic distance from a close world of beasts to the land of steel.
Pittsburgh opened Adrienne’s eyes to a city of the future where products can be broken into traceable paths of connection and analyzed like scientific experiments of human emotional reactions. After two semesters at the Art Institute, Adrienne Hedge has been painting avidly and putting herself into her work by melting and molding vinyl records barehanded. Transforming what once was into what now is has birthed a collection of repurposed, expressive vessels. The night still rules her, though a distant cry from rampages in wild brush along lakes colored Red by Man. She faces dangers unlike any she has known before – poverty, hostility, and, as always, brute isolation.
She rages forward against the mechanical city of steel turned tech, for now.