‘I Didn’t Mean it Like That’ was an immersive collaborative installation at both Canal Place Mall and the Contemporary Art Center in downtown New Orleans. On-screen, 12 interviewees share short stories in which they accidentally offended someone as well as a time they were offended themselves. The “I didn’t mean it like that…” phrase ties them all together and highlights the difference between intention and impact. As a 5-channel video installation, each screen focuses on a different moment of the frame, mimicking the way individuals uniquely interact with one another; looking to different features or gestures to communicate beyond words.


‘Reflects’ was a video installation that made my challenge to interviewees more difficult. They no longer had the out of, “I didn’t mean it like that.”  I asked them to name a time that they felt stereotyped and a time they stereotyped someone else, how it felt, and where they thought these ideas came from. The interviews were conducted inside a mirror box and then projected in a room of mirrors. Viewers were able to see their reflections in these mirrors as they watched each video, prompting them to reflect on how they fit within each projected narrative. These interviewees have varied lived experiences, identities, and misconceptions about one another; through curation, a narrative between them reveals the nuances of where these ideas come from and what it feels like to be on the receiving end of such judgements. Preliminary interviewees brought up topics including ageism, sexism, racism, exoticism, education, city of origin, mental illness, gender expression, and gender identity. Showing deep vulnerability on screen creates space for viewers to feel safe to question their own misperceptions and examine their insecurities. By collectively getting to the root of where these stereotypes come from, their truth is challenged.

Introduction to Installations and Alternative Practice

Marion – I Didn’t Mean it Like That

Chandler – I Didn’t Mean it Like That 

Andres – Reflects

Maggie – Reflects