‘Bodies’ is a series of pieces made using a combination of clay, driftwood and dried flowers. Alongside working with clay, I have been experimenting with shaping and drying flowers to create different expressions of movement between emotional states.
These pieces are on display in the glass cabinets at my current solo exhibition, ‘In the Seam’, at the Hearth Gallery, University Hospital Llandough. Influence for the series includes the collections of Surgeons' Hall where I’ve been fortunate enough to spend time while in Edinburgh for archival research, and also the wonderful online workshops of human remains conservator Cat Irving. (You can find Cat's blog at: https://thesewanderingbones.wordpress.com/)
I wanted the pieces to have that feeling of preserved bodies in jars and cabinets, but using bodies from the natural landscape. Reflecting on bipolarity in different spaces, and between past and present experience, I created ‘Bodies’, like the other sculptures in the exhibition, using what I found in the garden or on lockdown walks.
With (a lot) trial and error, I wanted to form them into reflections on movements between mood, between inside and outside, and between domestic and institutional spaces of care, based on both 19th century and present experience of severe mood states.
You can find out more about the exhibition and view the virtual gallery here: https://cardiffandvale.art/2021/05/18/in-the-seam/