Re-turn: Fabric Installations
A collection of works from RE-TURN exhibition.
In collaboration with Arielle Robins, Cathy Stanley and the elders of Mount Pleasant, Hermanus.
Fabric installations Re-turn 1, 2 and 3 incorporate elements of photography, embroidery and the use of upcycled materials. The wall hangings were made as a collaboration between the artist and the local collective of seamstresses and embroiderers from the Lombardi elders’ community together with the Community Work Programme members from Mount Pleasant, a local settlement. The areal images of the farmlands are captured and rendered by the artist in indigo blue on light cotton background. They are akin to melancholic archival photographs that attempt to pause the passage of time. The light, floating top layer of gauze-like fabric carries embroidered marks that reflect the irregular, seemingly incidental traces of nature. In these pieces Nature seems to be drawing its curtain over human history. Its lifeforce overwhelms the traces of human activity despite its delicate and ephemeral appearance. The power of nature to reconquer its territory is not seen as a threat but rather as an opportunity for us to rebuild our relationship with our natural environment and to return to it as a source of strength, wisdom and inspiration.
Some of the panels feature shimmering discs delicately sewn into the pattern – they are foil cut-outs from the used coffee pods, yet another consumer craze that had resulted in an environmental threat. Their upcycling into an artwork material is both evocative of the power of creativity and our agency to make the right choices for the future of our planet.