Friday 9th May was the date of the private view of MASS (M.A. Student Show or any interpretation others may wish to put on the name) at the Elysium Gallery Swansea. The gallery was packed with a diverse mixture of people along with family and friends.
Unfortunately there was no information available about the show. The title of my work holds equal importance as the piece itself; details of this and further information is on the website but here is my statement.
I came to the world of art later in life but I have the memory that once it was alien and intimidating to me. I would like to enthuse others who may think art is not for them and demonstrate it is for all.
My family is of great importance to me and I’m fascinated to know I am made up from hundreds of ancestors, through my DNA, by the habits I display and inherited skills I use.
Within my practice I take time to recognise and connect with my fore parents, be it through the media of paper, fabric, clay or yarn. The materials I use are of the everyday, rarely new, and ones that my (g+) grandparents would be familiar with. The importance is twofold; to emphasis my humble working class background and also to comment on the current throw away consumer society.
This body of work entitled Marriages is based on family names and occupations found on old marriage certificates and censuses. Through convention it is the paternal surname which is handed down through the generations, so many names vanish along the way. This piece is to acknowledge some of the lost ones, especially the female line.
In spite of the lack of information the exhibition had a good write up in I am News. There were twenty of us showing but I was fortunate enough to be one of the three named artists.
The following Tuesday we had our group crit. Quite rightly it was pointed out that, as a group, we should have been more organised. Next time I’ll increase my responsibility for what is happening. I decided to talk about my abandoned Mothers but don’t like the word abandoned as it sounds as if I’ve abandoned the mothers rather than the work. I had positive feedback with suggestions for further reading.