Preparing for the last crit exhibition was quite exciting as it was the first time I had a clear direction for my work. Playing with people’s expectations and relationships with objects and materials.
Objects are signifiers and we all have pre conceived expectations and ideas about how objects should relate to each other,and how these object should be seen. When these ideas are challenged it displaces and confuses people. making them question their original ideas. This is what I like to explore, through everyday objects, materials and signs that have been rejected, replaced or discarded.
By manipulating and disrupting their visual presence, to challenge their original narrative, create new questions, and to conjure up and recreate new memories. I don’t want the reasons behind the piece to be to obvious, and I don’t necessarily want people to like what they see or understand what they see but I do want them to question why, to give it their own narratives, and to try and shake off their pre conceived ideas of what we are told it should be.
The objects I were working with this time, are discarded metallic balloons an item that we all have memories off which are mostly happy ones. I had filled these with plaster as I wanted them to stay put in their deflated state and although they looked like they could move, they were grounded, crumpled heavy.
So to use old discarded balloons was a way of showing these objects as lost, somber, heavy memory full objects. Other connotations behind these are also the fact that they do not ever decompose, allowing them to hold onto these memories long past or own deaths.
I wanted these balloons to have some kind of attachment to them like the string we all see. Holding them, stopping them getting away.
Going through a few different ideas, but then thought that if I wanted to show a sense of lost memories, and change the expectations of the balloons then I had to change the type of string I used. The tapes immediately came to mind as I had been thinking about using them, in a similar way previously.
To pull out all the tape from the inside of the casing releasing the music, jogging the memories and allowing them to float freely but without the sound, immediately allows us to remember the sounds without hearing them.
Changing the way we see both these objects by connecting them was my main focus, these now heavy balloons could have never been held by these tapes, yet there they are, still on the ground not moving, and floating above are the reams of tape still attached to the casing floating in the wind.
I could have showed this a few different ways, but the length of the tape dictated how high I could take them, so the ceiling was out of the question, I could have brought in a tree and had them stuck in that but, then that wouldn’t have changed the expectations of the objects, as we all know they get stuck in trees.
I feel using the wall like I did was effective as it gave these items a sense of landscape, or even a drawing as they tumbled down the wall onto the floor.
Also using the plaster in the balloons was a tricky process as it set rather quickly, and it seems the plaster needs to be open to some kind of air to dry out properly, as they stayed quite wet and fragile.
I might look at using concrete should I recreate this work.