Objects of Mourning, 2006-2010
Objects of Mourning
Through this body of work and research I seek to understand how everyday objects assist us in transitioning through the difficult process of grief/mourning. I am interested in how mourning and commemoration is contained within objects and our constructed systems. During the process of mourning, objects can link us to loved ones that have passed or moments in life that are fleeting. This has inspired a strong interest in objects and motifs, which are sadly, no longer used or valued as they once were. These once beautifully decorative and valued objects carry with them the potential to become a source of meaning beyond their physical properties and an outlet for displacement, emptiness, loss, sentimentality, as well as hope and understanding.
Object of Mourning: Liminality
This work is inspired by my interest in the concentrated and outward mourning practices of the Victorian Era in contrast to the lack of negotiating loss and mourning within contemporary western culture. The mood of the era and the moral values of the Victorian times allowed them to express their sorrow in their outward appearance, especially through their manner of dress. It is distressing, that as a culture, we do not publicly grieve for our dead. An expression of self-identity, family connectedness, a general concern for others, and the constant reminder of the inevitable is lost. Where is the space for the grief in our lives? I find the Victorian sentimentality towards death, and that of other cultures, a moving testament in allowing oneself to express publicly, deeply personal moments.
From June 21st, 2009 to June 21st 2010, I constructed and wore a brooch a day for the duration of a year. The brooches are made from many different materials and objects, but primarily from black and gray fabrics, so familiar to the women of the Victorian era who took on the burden of publicly mourning. This time, set aside every day, to construct a brooch, whether it was a few minutes or an hour, allowed me the space to consider more deeply my relationship with loved ones, who have passed away. It afforded me the opportunity to reflect on the constant, and exhausting work involved in moving through the grieving process. Wearing the brooches, on a daily basis became a signifier and prosthetic. They also served as conduits for memory to reside, as well as a chance to reconsider the void within our inward and outward mourning practice.
Comment Wall (19 comments)
You need to be a member of crafthaus to add comments!
Thanks for signing up again with crafthaus. Your membership is valid through March 15, 2018.
Now that you’ve successfully re-registered you can get even more involved. This means, you’re not just getting the whole crafthaus picture... you are a part of it. Your contributions via blogs, photos, and discussions will enrich our open crafthaus environment immensely, so please let us know what’s going on in your art life! Don't hold back! Thanks for being a crafthaus member!
Congratulations on your SNAG Presidency! I am looking forward to what you bring to SNAG this year!
Thank you so much! School is going well and I am glad to be finishing up my second graduate school year here at IUP. :-)
thanks for the friend request! i really enjoyed looking through your gallery.
haha thanks Renee :) I am happy to be here too!
Great! I will call you tomorrow.
Hi Renee, Sorry I haven't gotten back to you yet. We have unexpected houseguests. My nieces came in for the weekend and decided to stay a few more days. I've been busy keeping them busy ;) I am so sorry about your cat's illness, I hope things go well (Friday?) Funny...I was thinking I might drive over to the MSG show and back myself on Saturday. Maybe carpool? We could have that coffie on the way.
Next week looks good we can meet at the studio (Grand Haven) or somewhere in between.
I am going to try to make the MSG reception.
hey it was super-rad having you here! am gonna try my darndest to get to SNAG- just realized i have a wedding to go to on the 28th but am hoping i can make it out for the first day of it or so...might be tight! :P
View All Comments