Eli Craven’s work explores the role of images in processes of socialization, specifically their relationship to identity, death, and desire. The acts of looking and
collecting are central to his process. He gathers imagery and objects from estate sales, secondhand markets, and digital archives, and they are reconfigured to
interrogate the ostensible values of the original. Using photography, sculpture, and collage he creates works aimed at forming narratives that brim with new
possibilities—engaging viewer’s senses with the familiar, the bizarre, the mundane, and the erotic.
His series Spreads consists of carefully selected magazines framed completely intact. Portions of the frames are routed allowing the magazine to protrude from
the edges while specific images are highlighted using the mat window. The result is a conversation between the image in focus and the rest of the magazine. Gravity forces the magazine to bend and fall from the sides of the frame creating a sculpture that points to the conflict between the printed image and its life as a