- This event has passed.
January 17, 2009 - February 9, 2009
IMAGE ↔ OBJECT
I work in textile and product design, focussing on knitted felt clothing and soft furnishings. I use photography as a resource tool and to document work. In this exhibition however, I have used it as the prime medium. The objects in this exhibition have evolved from a collection of photographic images, predominantly textures, which have been taken at the point at which ‘the eye falls’.
The shapes of the majority of objects in the exhibition have been drawn from shells found on the beach. The objects have been formed by cutting stitching and glueing flat sheets of paper printed with repeat images of building facades, and textures found in the natural environment. They take the form of dresses, hats, bags and vessels.
The printed images represent that point in the design process, at which application of material is considered: How will this surface behave as the skin of the object it represents. It is the ‘skin’ of that object that lures the viewer. More than just a trap for the eye, the printed image also prompts meaning when applied to the object. For example, the building facades conjure up the idea of order imposed by the human architect; natural textures convey a different response.
I wanted to show how an idea or emotion is held by reason and order and in the apparent function of the object. I embrace contradiction and allow the textures to evoke or stand in for other materials. I have titled the works from this perspective – for example, ‘Dress, Shibori-dyed silk’, tho clearly there is no silk present. The texture of a red leaf stands in for the coloured silk. The red leaf reflects the visceral quality of its surface, the structural lines appear like veins and the colours appear to bleed into one another as in the traditional dyeing techniques of shibori.
Another work, using an image of moss, is titled ‘Dress, torn silk stitched ’. The moss has grown on the broken pattern of the bark suggesting torn or frayed edges, or a ceramic glaze adhering to the pattern of a rough clay surface. In the textures created by the moss and leaf image, there is the sense of the surface breaking down. The two images taken in the natural environment evoke a surface of seemingly random patterning.
In contrast, most of the images of building facades evoke surface materials which are uniform and firm in structure, i.e. ‘wool plaid suiting’ or ‘metal inlay’. There is one however where stripes are formed in the image, suggesting the ‘soft’ striping created by fusing glass strips. But as in the natural world there is an element of controlled chaos, of cause and effect.
The scale of the objects also ask consideration, ie. building or hat? The ‘hat’ could easily be a prototype for the shell of a building. The works hover somewhere between abstraction and representation. The images conjure up an idea or possibility, but are not necessarily what they appear to be. The objects exist in that moment before the surface finally ‘fits’ the form and its function and therefore allows more consideration as to what the final outcome might be.