“How spirit lives in your body” Amazing Reel Artwork

Independent artist, Erika Iris Simmons, from Princeton turn random things into composite art. Usually she makes portraits of people associated with the item she choose – without adding any paint or pigments. She made a series of cassette tape art named “The Ghost in the Machine”. She said that the tape ribbon represents our thoughts, the data within. Taking that data – those bits of memory – and rearranging them to form what we see as a face is my way of finding a “ghost in the machine.”

In this series She showcase a number of portraits of musicians made out of recycled cassette tape with original cassette. Also included are portraits made from old film and reels. The idea comes from a phrase (ironically) coined by philosopher Gilbert Ryle, a description of how your spirit lives in your body. I imagine we are all, like cassettes, thoughts wrapped up in awkward packaging.

Audrey graceful

Recycled 8mm film on canvas… love the reel hidden in her hair

Mozart’s Serenade

white dress detail


Fred and Adele

Portrait of Fred Astaire and his sister Adele made entirely out of donated, recycled 8mm film on white canvas. Been playing around with the exposure and histogram settings, trying to capture the essence of the pieces better… my photography is still very much a work-in-progress, but I love the piece. Note the 3d effects as the film leaves the reel and twists into Fred’s leg. Its neat to see in person


Fred and Ginger

Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers out of recycled 8mm film with Kodak reel.

Steven Tyler

Goddess of Music

An organization in India asked that I make this for them. Nothing used to create the image but the sheet music. It flows like poetry. The background matches the color of the sheet music more closely than represented here, so the notes really jump out in person. This is my favorite kind of project. .. this music was taken from “One Heart, One Mind” by Johann Strauss.

Maggie Cheung

Aviv Geffen

Kurt Cobain

Traci Lords – Traci, I Love You

Some new VHS art… the really interesting part for this one was figuring out how to make the blonde hair using only the thick black tape. commission, 2010

Debbie Harry of Blondie

30 by 30 inch representation of Debbie Harry of Blondie for Bumbershoot in September

Lauryn Hill

Cassette tape on canvas, 2010. Love her voice

Patti Smith

Jerry Garcia Live


Bob Marley

Great start to the year! The cassette case is painted very lightly, so you can still read “Bob Marley and the Wailers : Birth of a Legend” on the case. Wanted to do something a little fun…Cassette tape on canvas, 2010

Kung Fu Cassette

Did some work last year for Jung v. Matt am Neckar (German ad agency)… this was a promo for a radio station. I sculpted the cassette into designs by their art director and then sent the tape sculptures to the agency where they were photographed and made uber nice-looking. 2009

Beat Boxers

Jerry Garcia

Lenny Kravitz


Paul Griffiths

Melora Creager

Dedicated to Rasputina, my favorite group of cello-driven music gods. If you haven’t already, check them out at: www.rasputina.com
Cassette tape on canvas 2009.

Bon Jovi

John Lennon

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

log in

reset password

Back to
log in