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About the work: Ward re-contextualizes found/discarded objects in juxtapositions that create complex and metaphorical meanings that highlight cultural values or offer social critique. He intentionally leaves the meaning of his work open, allowing the viewer to bring their own subject position to the work and provide his/her own interpretation.
Here, Ward presents a tin can opened from the bottom and covered in black stencil ink. This work was inspired by a video that Ward came across on the Internet of a person finding a can that had been vigorously pried open from the bottom, instead of by using the easy pull tab on the lid. Ward related this action to political gridlock, a metaphor for the Obama presidency, and also the idea of meeting obstacles with a ‘can-do’ attitude. Although Ward often deals with heavy, political issues throughout his work, he takes an optimistic attitude, rather than perpetuate the negativity of the current political climate.