In June 2021 I received a grant from WECA to develop my sculptural practise. A recurring theme of my work is an exploration of the stories we hold in our bodies. I am fascinated by the way our life experiences can become embodied, and how our bodies will often try to tell these stories, using their own visceral language. I wanted to develop a somatic, sculptural practice that would allow people to tell their stories without the need for spoken words. For the last 4 years I have been developing a trauma informed creative methodology for working with survivors of sexual violence and I was interested to explore ways that a somatic, sculptural practise could be incorporated into this work. I have believe it could be a powerful creative tool for people who have experienced trauma to express themselves in this way.
Over 12 months I carried out a period of trauma research, and sculptural development, playing with new techniques and experimenting with different materials. I explored casting from the body, and creating figurative sculptures some of which I then cast. I became fascinated with the texture of tree bark and how the bodies of trees also show their scars and stories. I have been playing with the similarities between tree bark and skin and trying to find ways to incorporate the texture of bark on to figurative pieces. I am interested in both these external stories, those on our skin where our bodies meet the world, and the stories held within internal organs and structures. This is definitely a work in progress and one that I will continue to return to. I am incredibly grateful to WECA for the support to develop this practise.
“Forget your perfect offering. There is a crack, a crack in everything. That’s how the light gets in” – Leonard Cohen