Thursday 21 June 2012

Cloth and memory: Marking time

I have been so busy adding pins and needles to my curtains for the Salts Mill exhibition that I haven’t had time to blog or do much else. It took me 8 hours to add all the pins to the first curtain and although I’ve speeded up since then it still takes well over 7 hours to complete each one. It certainly represents marking time and embodies the relentlessness and tedium of such a repetitive task. As well as pinning the curtains I’ve been writing my statement for the catalogue, choosing images and writing captions as well as various admin tasks like working out insurance values and organising all the fixtures and fittings I’ll need to hang everything. The exhibition opens on 14 July and we are hanging during the previous week so not long to go now.

Thursday 7 June 2012

Cloth and memory: Curtains

I have now made the curtains for my installation at Salts Mill as part of the Cloth and memory exhibition to be shown in the summer. They are over 3 m long and I have made four of them so far. Unfortunately the fabric I bought was not quite wide enough to span the window space so instead of making one curtain for each window I’ve had to make two, by cutting the material in half and adding a lace trim to each edge. I’ve finished them off with a frill along the bottom so they look similar to the smaller curtains I’m using on the other side of the room. Now I have to add the pins and needles to them which is quite a task as three of the curtains have to be covered in pins and the fourth has to be more than half covered. I’m going to leave them out in my studio so I can add a few pins every time I pass them.

Friday 1 June 2012

Doris Salcedo: Plegaria Muda

For this exhibition at White Cube in Mason’s Yard, Doris Salcedo is showing Plegaria Muda an installation of oblong tables and A flor de Piel a shroud of rose petals; both bear witness to the lives of victims of torture and murder. Plegaria Muda, exhibited in a windowless room, contains forty-five pairs of tables laid on top of each other, separated by thick slabs of earth. Walking through them evokes the feeling of a graveyard and the smell of the earth reinforces that experience. However, pushing through the upturned surface of the tables are shoots of green plants suggesting that the lives they commemorate have not been destroyed but live on. The enormous shroud of rose petals that forms A flor de Piel fills an entire room and also combines feelings of decay mingled with hope and a suggestion of the ephemerality of life. Photography was not allowed so the image above shows fragments of previous work by Doris Salcedo.