Title: ‘Cut off, built up’ A series of new sculptural pieces I’m working on. Where I’m exploring balance in relation to sustainability and the built environment. To make the sculptures I’m using off cuts from certified Sapele, a hard wood from the African rainforest, also know as African Mahogany.
Growing and Producing:
Inspired by an exhibition I visited some time ago at Hauser & Wirth Somerset, titled: ‘The land we live in, the land we left behind’ curated by Adam Sutherland. Which explored the contradictory nature of society’s relationship to the rural. It brought together work by artists from around the world and spanned centuries from the 1500’s to the present. the title of the exhibition referred to a toast used by migrants in the 18th and 19th centuries, which celebrated the land they live in and the land they came from. Here is a link for more information on that exhibition: https://www.hauserwirth.com/hauser-wirth-exhibitions/6232-the-land-we-live-in-the-land-we-left-behind
In response to this exhibition, and in particular the ‘produce, growing and processing’ element that engaged the viewer in food production. I have made, through the process of: planting, tending, picking, sorting, drying and packaging. A small selection of limited edition herbs and preserves. Borrowing the artistic term ‘limited edition’ on the labels, I am referencing the limitation of the small crop used, until the next seasons harvest or renewed growth. Added to this I included a website to illustrates the current norm of display and selling through the internet. This type of produce historically would have been bartered, sold at market and generally swapped, traded and gifted. The website link where the limited edition herbs and preserves can be viewed and purchased is: http://www.dorsetgardenproduce.com
Further research for this project I looked at the artist: Fernando Garcia-Dory. A fascinating, boundary pushing, artist who’s work investigates the role of territories, culture, goe-politics ……..Using as a platform agro-ecological projects and actions……Shaped as it is by weather, season, harvests etc…… His web site for more information is: https://www.fernandogarciadory.info
I have titled my collection of herbs and preserves: ‘Earth Food Life’. As mentioned above, this is a number of limited edition preserves and herbs, inspired by the 2018 exhibition titled ‘The land we live in, the land we left behind’ at Hauser & Wirth in Somerset, UK. At which, I left a selection of my ‘Ash panel’ bookmarks to be given to visitors. I find myself revisiting this exhibition now and then.
The art in that show, particularly items that reflected the way earlier settlers to the USA produced, processed and preserved the food they needed, has informed my response. I’m interested in how this kind of making, including process and finished items are depicted under an artistic umbrella. Further how it formed, and informed that exhibition.
Is what I’ve made, art? Well, for me its more an extension of my creativity, a part of my everyday life, and as mentioned earlier a response to the Exhibition which I thought might be interesting to share.