‘breaking’ 2008


Whilst visiting Japan with a broken collarbone I became interested in the crutched trees. The crutches, both supporting the trees and causing warping, made me think of the trees as fragile. Pursuing this further, and attracted by its qualities of breaking, I have been using bone china to cast twigs from trees to create sculptures, installations and participatory work. The similarity between experiences of manoeuvring between unfired china in my studio and walking through crowds whilst protecting a broken collarbone has made me aware of the restrictions of a fragile body. Taking this experience to my studio work I am creating ‘fragility’; china twig walls forming spaces that are so tight to walk through that they are often knocked down. The sound created by the china breaking is both unsettling and melodic and has formed an integral part of further work. In ‘breaking’ experiencing myself, and observing others, walking over a floor deep in china twigs allowed me to explore this contrast between the pleasure of breaking and the uncomfortable violence of destruction. Underlying these installations is that one requires an active, assertive, destructive approach to the space and the other instills a passive, restrictive response.