Dreams, Wishes and Expectations, 2017

Dreams, Wishes and Expectations artist statement -08-2017

Dreams, Wishes and Expectations curated by Coral Bijoux
A work by Owusu Ankomah (top left) – Soft Gentle Depths
All photographs documented at Voices of Women Museum
Photography by Roger Jardine

This work is an interrogation on the dynamics of power – women are framed by the larger debates around gender and identity. I have been particularly interested in the notion of an “ordinary” person, framed within the larger debate of where power resides. This installation affirms a claim and a re-assertion of “rite of passage” and an assertion of personal power. Re-powered. It serves as a metaphorical reminder of an ever-present threat to our comfortable ambivalence – one that we have created ourselves. The snake metaphor, which I quietly embed in many of my exhibitions, lies as a metaphor at the heart of the gender divide. The mythological negative referencing of “snake” is a curatorial device that frames the dis-empowered threat to the feminine. These metaphors have clear and obvious precedence in the many religious and cultural narratives that permeate the social, cultural and political arenas.

The use of plastic – discarded plastic – is  a metaphor in this work. It took me down lanes and around corners I would have preferred not to go. When I first used it, it was a reference to many households ‘’manned’’ by women who have used plastic…plastic table cloths, plastic bowls for children, plastic flowers to decorate. A working class notion of excellence captured in a material that can be easily wiped, with prints of luscious fruits, beautiful flowers and dreamscapes of places that we will never visit. An expectation for a better life. A dream, perhaps of one day…, a wish that somehow my life would change…for the better…

Dreams, Wishes and Expectations
Detail from dreams, wishes and expectations, 2017, plastic and packaging tape

Photographs by Wade Howard (Ocean Driven), Roger Jardin, Coral Bijoux

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