A Backing Choir

These pieces are made in the flow of life from my unconscious. I believe there is a true story here somewhere. The pieces however are both nuanced with delicate detail from the psyche and brutally slap-dash. I aim for a piece to mirror my intention that has integrity, but then I make something like this and have to think, ‘now what…am I mocking myself here?’.

I have had time to reflect on this piece and I think it is trying to hold some fantasy/reality of my own potency as a women and artist, a leader, a loved person, a person in dialogue with herself and others.

I called this piece, ‘spilt milk’ because much potential is lost, seeped out from leaky vessels. Many women don’t reach their potential because of lack of containment and supportive structures in society, economically, psychologically, it’s annoying! For the man a right of passage is assumed bringing it’s own pressures, but the act of making new life, new semen is continuous. For women biologically we run out of eggs, our fertile years end, our ability to make life-supporting milk ceases when our babies no longer suckle, if we can have babies, if we can breastfeed, if we can pursue our creative ambitions. If.

I tried to make a very large cock in 2003 and recall it was unviable as a structure. Perhaps they reflect a way of managing aspects of my identity, trying it on for size. It’s hard I think for women especially to be verbose and grandiose. To proffer their pride and glory in a confident way. We seem to go mad with it, unlike many of our male colleagues who can sustain being lofty, arrogant and credible, until their practice is taken seriously and beyond doubt.

For a moment, I allowed this sculpture to come through and be present and the cat is a figure with some authority. The following cock I made is even larger, but the figures drawn on it are cascading down the shaft and the cat although better formed is clinging to the edge losing it’s position of top cat.

In my quest to reflect, ‘this is seriously how it is for a serious women artist’ I continue charting these contractions… from vulnerability to daringly confident. I see that they become more present, take up space, hold that space, speak and become in their many manifestations, a backing choir.

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