For fifteen year my work was based on the interaction of mechanical and organic parts within myself and in the world around me. Having artificial parts such as pins in a knee and a reconstructed inner ear, I found, and still find, the tool, the android, the automaton to be an appropriate symbol of our capacity for alienation, devastation and simultaneously growth and creation.
Recently that work has grown to focus on my hearing disability and the effect it has on my life experiences. My hearing ranges from complete deafness to hearing at about half the level of the average working individual. It is a situation of attempting to find comfort in discomfort, of accepting what I cannot change, changing what I can and simply pushing through. As Helen Keller put it: “the experience of trial and suffering”. I can only benefit from this if I not only accept it, but endeavor to love it.
And that's what my characters do. They aren't elegant or graceful – rather the opposite, as if they were hastily reassembled in someone's garage. They're in survival mode, a constant state of growth and adaptation. Each of them represents a specific situation or amalgamation thereof. Alienation and isolation is another aspect of my work. Significant hearing loss prevents the individual from participating in the larger community without assistance. This is often seen as aloofness. The isolation necessitated by this condition can make a person feel anxious and alone, as if they have no real role or sense of belonging. This is represented in my work by blank white space or various kinds of chaotic mark making meant to represent persistent tinnitus. In summary, my recent work is an exploration of my life-long disability, the psychological impact of it, and the adaptations that I and others have made to continue functioning as a result.
A native of Kansas, Brandon Sanderson split his formative years between rural Kansas and Colorado Springs, Colorado. He holds a BS from Colorado State University-Pueblo in Printmaking and Computer Information Systems and an MFA in Printmaking from the University of South Dakota. From 2005 to 2008, he taught at College of the Sequoias and Bakersfield College in California. Since 2008, Sanderson has been at the University of North Carolina-Pembroke where he is now an Associate Professor of Art. He teaches multiple levels of drawing and all levels of printmaking, including intaglio, lithography, and woodcut. He is also the Coordinator of Frogman's Print Workshops, the largest printmaking workshop in the United States, a position he has held since 2013.
In his time at UNCP, Brandon has organized six national printmaking exhibitions and brought in more than 50 visiting artists. He has also held 21 printmaking workshops at universities in a 16 states and participated in over 60 print exchanges. He has also participated in more than 400 exhibitions, including 74 international exhibitions.
Brandon has been a member of the Artnauts since 2019.