In my recent work, I have been interested in our relationship with life and death, growth and decay, and how our perceptions of items and places change depending on our personal connections to them, as well as how they may have been distorted, transformed, altered or displayed. How can something become disturbing or creepy that was once comforting or innocent?
I started by exploring my relationship with my local cemetery, considering the significance and personal meaning it holds for many visitors that also experience this place. By using photography and video editing, I could play around with how perceptions of this place could be altered e.g. saturated, bright imagery, subverting the idea of cliché dark cemetery photography.
Incorporating flowers collected from cemetery bins, I began to explore concepts of decay and the preservation of beauty, considering their relationship to the place and as tokens of love and respect, using printing and pressing processes. This was partly influenced by the Young British Artists group, who often explore death as a feature of their work, in particular Anya Gallaccio, as well as 17th century Dutch still life, which use symbolic objects within the work to reference death.
Taking influence from artists Jeff Koons and Mike Kelley, I started to collect and combine items related to childhood innocence, sentimentality and attachment. Investigating juxtapositions of ‘cute’ and ‘creepy’ or ‘comforting’ and ‘disturbing’, and using plants that hold different purposes and give different experiences to explore natural processes of growth and decay.
Contact: Instagram - artevangeline