The milky white chandelier is a creation utilising used and throw-away items, including plastic caps, bowls and necklaces. It represents the dangling crystal globules and chains ubiquitous to ‘traditional’ chandeliers. As a young married, moving into a first home, my husband yearned for a chandelier. For him it symbolised achievement, of making the grade, of coming up in the world. All the grand houses had a chandelier, so in his mind we could, in our little triple fronted blonde brick Nunawading house show that we were climbing a ladder of success. For me, I had to clean the damn thing.
The amount of plastic that enters my house and then leaves in a bin without another look or thought is mind boggling. This process forced me to look a little more carefully and discover that not all plastics or foils are equal aesthetically. Some presented themselves with beautiful textures or caught the light in a certain way, some allowing a certain amount of transparency. The word chandelier represents opulence and something precious although outmoded.
Bringing light to the contents of our bins can also bring light to the plight of our environment.
This work has been created from my finished webster pack. Webster packs are filled with daily medications for chronic health conditions. Mine is bipolar. I have lived with it for 35 years. The illness is like a chandelier. Moments of bright sparkly light, then turn it off – darkness with little clinking slivers of hope. But in comes the webster pack. With my twice daily regime of medications. I like my bipolar well contained by these meds. No more high highs and deep lows. These drugs give me the even keel to be present for my family, my work, my art and me. No more turning light switches off and on in my brain at the whim of a disease. The simple webster pack. If you look at it it is quite beautiful. There are reflections and shiny bits and sparkly bits. It makes a crackling noise when you bust open one of the blister packs.
This work bears the hallmark of my obsession with the concept of home, hoarding, and personal stories. It is a collection of used tea bags that have been kept and left to dry, then painted with clay and gesso, and hidden within are two small ceramic shards, old remnants of a discarded tea cup. The work is a kind of memorial: an artefact of the sublime forces that shape our domestic world and the everyday objects that occupy it. My aim with this work is to summon stories of being human through the traces of our fossilised remains.
Around the world – is a spherical ready to hang object made of a small disco ball, crystal chandelier pieces and ‘chromed’ miniature people. As it sphere twirls the crystal pieces refracts the light and the miniature people ‘walk’ in a continuous path around the sphere in single file preciously perched on the outer points. It’s trying to be delicate , fragile and solid all at the same time
Buddy Up is a intentionally humorous piece looking at the way the military shapes our world. I am using toy soldiers doing yoga to create a global mass that makes no sense, The small regular humans perch on the outside wistfully looking out for something better or wandering aimlessly stuck in the confusing interior. The chrome exterior is to reflect the light and give the impression of strength and stability – which is not the case it held together very precariously. The title Buddy up is play on the military concept of bonding and reliance amongst a group of young men that have been stripped of their individualism to be molded into singular unit
Chandeliers remind me of times gone by. Of rich settings, and parties held in large ballrooms full of anticipation and excitement, filled with objects and decorations that sparkled and shone.
The rooms and furniture slowly crafted with skill and love, and around many years later for new generations to enjoy. The partygoers now gone, and a new audience immerses themselves in the affluent surroundings.
My party decoration is made from chip packets. Like many decorations made today, the chip packet is made from single-use plastic. It sits on the supermarket shelf glimmering with words and slogans to entice the viewer. When purchased the contents are often eaten fast, on the go or shared at a social gathering filled with laughter and fun. With the chips eaten, the packaging that held them is no longer required, discarded quickly, but taking 10 – 20 years to decompose, long after the party has ended.