Degree Show Installation – SUMMER OF STENCH
I aimed for the work I presented in the physical GSA Postgraduate Showcase in Stow College (20/8/21 – 26/8/21) to represent my multidisciplinary nature; this includes etchings, mixed media pieces on found surfaces and screenprints on bedding. The bedding pieces were created during my residency at Print Clan (22/6/21 – 25/6/21), whilst the etchings were made in the workshop at Stow College, and the paintings were done on discarded mirrors.
I gave half of the pieces in the show titles in their own right, but the idea of ‘Summer of Stench’ came about from the motifs present in my fabric screenprints, where the text ‘Mr Whiffy Ltd’ gazes up at a fly eyeballing an ice cream cone, but it’s a sweetcorn-infested turd inside the cone instead instead. ‘Mr Whiffy’ is simply a play on the term ‘Mr Whippy’, partly due to the swirly, caricature turd appearance of the ice creams themselves, but also due to the use of urea often being present in cheap vanilla flavourings, and urea is found in urine.
The mirrors were a fairly spontaneous decision; I felt they tied in with a lot of the domestic, societal themes and settings that often feature in my work, especially with them being on domestic surfaces. This is also why I chose bedding for my fabric samples at Print Clan, along with finding the soaked and damaged chair that I positioned one of these mirror pieces upon.
Sculptural elements began to feature a little more over the course of Stage 3. I had the idea of stuffing an actual duvet into one of my duvet cover pieces and giving it a lumpy appearance similar to a bin bag or an overstuffed nappy, especially with the colour scheme. Along with this more sculptural nature of the central hanging duvet piece, I took a risk and added a more fiddly, complex one to one of the other mirrors despite having reservations as to whether or not it was ‘too much’ or if it would stay stuck to it. However, I’m glad it paid off and that I chose to be a little more ambitious in the guidelines and circumstances we had to work around.