Throughout my artistic career I have always worked with found objects, I create installations and sculpture with materials and ideas I find in the skips and pathways of urban and rural landscapes. Found or discarded objects evoke a sense of memory, often linked to feelings of loss and/or the passage of time. I use assemblage and collage to open up a space of reflection, where multiple meanings are allowed to come to the surface. I have been drawn to things and issues relating to everyday life, popular and sub-culture, motivated by curiosity about whence they came from and what their meanings might have been in their past lives.
Memory and history are fundamental to the human condition. In my work, I address the way memory is valued, forgotten, used or misused in today’s fast-moving society. In the words of cultural theorist Aleida Assmann, my work complicates the distinction between storage memory and function memory. In this way, I aim to create a critical, plurivocal commentary about what is lost and what is not, what is discarded and what is kept.
How memory interacts with the present and how this shapes personal, cultural and also political remembrances is changing massively with the recent technological advances, especially the rise of digital media. I am exploring how this impacts on the way we record our environment and document and archive the memories of our lives.
In the past I have worked with family photographs and hot glass to explore the movement of people across continents. At a time of massive urban restructuring in my London neighbourhood, I have made casts of manhole covers in bronze, glass and aluminium and displayed them in a futile attempt to preserve something of the communities lost to gentrification. I have digitally reworked found 1960s Super 8 found footage. Combined with digital editing and display techniques, these amateur films have become powerful signifiers of change.
Much of my work draws on my many and varied life experiences. My inspiration comes from a wide range of sources, artists, theorists and activists. I am aiming to produce multiple meanings and perspectives within my work.
Walter Benjamin talks of the “chaos of memories” that collectors have, I am a collector I always have been one and I want to put some meaning to my chaos and others collections, by reworking them to provoke connotations, associations and memories in the viewer.