Art in the Library

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“The place of the abject is where meaning collapses, the place where I am not. The abject threatens life, it must be radically excluded from the place of the living subject, propelled away from the body and deposited on the other side of an imaginary border which separates the self from that which threatens the self.”

Barbara Creed ‘Horror and the Monstrous Feminine: An Imaginary Abjection’

 

“… Discipline produces subjected and practised bodies, ‘docile’ bodies.”

Michel Foucault ‘Discipline and Punish’

 

This work uses the body as a site to examine and question the conditions and ascribed boundaries of human experience. The work acknowledges that the body is defined not merely by the corporeal limits of individual, but also the social space and cultural context that defines it and controls it.

 

Previously, having focused on installation and film, this work marks a new chapter with the incorporation of two new mediums of ceramics and printmaking.

 

The work emphasises the art of making as a way of understanding and interpreting the world. The Lino Cut prints bear the marks of cutting and removing areas to leave positive space which then imprints an image. The ceramic works, which employ the bone-like fragility of porcelain, are made from moulds, rather than throwing and have been incised with an image. Both have a handmade, imperfect quality which retains the touch of the artist.

 

The works portray of images which expose human innards in an attempt to transgress the inner-outer boundary. Interjecting the theories of The Abject (revulsion and horror in the ‘the other’) and The Uncanny (where domestic objects become foreign, alien and non-functional), the work seeks to destabilise the viewer and make them question their own bodily experience.

 

The body is also posited as a site for exploring the fragility and strength of the human condition under duress and how memory may be carried within our cells. This is discussed through the themes of duality and the double, the impact of medical science, illness and health and the possibility of rebirth and rejuvenation.

This exhibition was at Woodley Library, Reading.