BA Textile Design, Winner, 2017
Experiments in chance operations, inspired by late twentieth century Fluxus artists such as Joseph Beuys and John Cage, provided a starting point for what would later evolve from small scale works in paint to large scale print body pieces.
Working organically — allowing my work to grow naturally from an expressiveness not rooted in any form of predetermined design — facilitated a gestural freedom that resulted in work that favoured the unexpected. In the absence of formal planning, constraints placed on my process such as restrictions on time and physical limitations (in one experiment I restricted myself to painting using only my mouth, in another, while blindfolded) provided some form of framework that constantly challenged the possibility of repetition and gestural stagnation.
Translating these chance works into larger scale, print-based body pieces later shifted my emphasis towards the theatrical. Taking inspiration from Japanese Kabuki theatre (my own roots are half Japanese), as well as body artists and avant-garde artists and fashion designers such as Lucy Orta and Issey Miyake, I explored the dissonances and interactions between the human form and my works.
Movement is central to my practice. As the performer/wearer moves, both the body and the works appear distorted, perverted from their original state. As with my earlier experiments, the emphasis was on chance and how outcomes can be manipulated through arbitrary, oftentimes banal actions. Using film, I have been able to underscore the accidental, expressive quality of my work.
Moreover, strict choreography was abandoned in favour of the spontaneous — a move that allowed for mishaps and experimentation. Indeed, central to my work is the absence of narrative. Intuition over formal planning, therefore, allowed my work to appear kinetic, rather than fixed; organic and in flux.
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