Dust Garden: Little Particles of Happiness
Following an 8 month long residency in what was once a WW2 bunker, I have created a meandering landscape of strange beings and inhabitants. 100 feet beneath the busy pavements of Clapham lies a rabbit warren of colon-like tunnels. Far, far away, completely isolated and barely accessible, this unused space has become my she-cave. Every now and again the rumbling of the underground trains above create a breeze, reminding me that others exist.
I have used a ‘make do and mend’ ethos and become a quasi kleptomaniac of the streets....borrowing all sorts of daily detritus for my burrow. No skip is passed by or ignored by this self imposed rag and bone woman. Building sites, front gardens and alleyways have become my
goldmine of excavation, after all one woman’s rubbish is another’s treasure!
Inside this alien environment, a discarded and broken garden rake hangs from the low flat steel eves - shape-shifting into a goddess. This deity wears long black tentacles made of dusty electrical piping and leads to inflated surgical gloves. Shredded newspaper is amassed into straw bales or afro hair atop of a chair and boneless legs. Cardboard boxes covered in pools of ink, as if charred and burnt, become bricks blackened by the night. Groups of hanging amorphous plywood shapes evoke cloud spirits and stalactites amongst half asleep twinkling bat-faces. Discarded unstretched canvases become a hollow rock face and an erupting fiery volcano.
These hemispherical tunnels with their giant-sized nuts and bolts, resemble the hull of a cruise liner or spaceship, they are trapped in time and on a parallel universe. There is no indication of the weather outside and it is always night time here. It is a nocturnal collection of giant arteries, leading endlessly to other tunnels, dead ends of crypt-like rooms or dungeons. Ominous stairways blocked by crime-scene tape, lead upwards to jet black gloom and tenebrous cold air.
I have become something of a hermetic surrealist, using the subconscious and the effect of the tunnel's atmosphere and automatism to shape my work. A collection of objects have been created through the exploitation of chance......a kind of archipelago of strange dwellers. Has a subterranean madness taken hold in this utterly unique space or have the spirits of the abandoned passageways cast their spell?