Nathan Sharratt says Come Inside. Me.

Massive installation like stepping through the wardrobe into a kind of American working-class Narnia


Nathan Sharratt’s mother put him up for adoption when he was 5 years old. Ten minutes later, she adopted him back. Sharratt explains the situation in his artist statement for Come Inside. Me., his current exhibit installed in a vacant Summerhill bungalow: “Massachusetts law doesn’t allow for a child to be adopted who has a legal parent or guardian. So after my parents married, and my non-biological father wanted to adopt me, my mother had to give me up as a ward of the state, and then both parents jointly adopted me. I was an orphan for 10 minutes.”

Sharratt’s not telling you this so that you feel sorry for him. “We love each other, and that’s all that matters,” he says of his family in the statement. He’s telling you this so that you can get to know him a bit before stepping into the domestic dreamscape he’s created at 30 Ormond St., presented by Dashboard Co-op. Throughout the home’s seven rooms, Sharratt has deconstructed the narratives of various family members in an effort to better understand himself. While intensely personal (“I lost it at 13” reads a stainless steel plaque in the family room), there is plenty of space to consider certain universalities about family that exist even if you were never an orphan for 10 minutes. Like Ben Roosevelt’s The Blue Flame and Jason Kofke and Chris Chambers’ The Ends, Come Inside. Me. offers a transportive experience, as if stepping through the wardrobe into a kind of American working-class Narnia.