The secret gallery’s blog

Maybe the first secret gallery in Doolin, Co. Clare, Ireland

Modern Mary gets some finishing touches!

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A while ago I wrote about the piece I was making which was mused by James called ‘Modern Mary’. The piece started off as biker leathers with words painted on them, such as brave woman, strong woman, romantic woman, and a list of words that are associated with women. Today, after a conversation about the piece with James, I was encouraged if not sent off to finish the piece as an instillation piece and not just funky looking biker leathers! and to be on time for an open submission exhibition this Friday! So off I went to Ennistymon in search of old fashioned wallpaper, fabric, a very large shoe box or boot box and materials to make a good looking box!

I always find it difficult to finish my work so it becomes something concluded and salable, and does not disappear after a heavy shower! James is far better at this then I am. So he suggested that the box be part of the piece and displayed underneath it with the lid off and resting on the side of the box, the box needed to be lined with old fashioned paper like they would have been, he was thinking of around the 1920s or 1930s as the leathers are old and that is from about when things started to change the most for Women. I really like James’ idea of having the box that the piece is transported in being part of the work and just as much attention and love given to it. We discussed putting it in a glass case or even resin but I preferred the simplicity and lightness of the box. I love art that can be taken with you and is not too cumbersome. This folds up so neatly  into the boot box there is not an inch of waste!

It was fun going around the shops in Ennistymon and asking for the materials, and explaining what I needed them for, it is all part of the art making process. I also enjoyed sitting by the fire and meditatively wrapping wool around the wooden coat hanger listening to the wind. It was almost like knitting by the fire, something many women would have spent many wintry nights doing.

I liked James’ idea of the box looking like it had been stored since the 1920s and now the leathers are taken out and aired reveal ‘Modern Mary’.

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Written by Marianne Slevin

27 November, 2008 at 12:52 am

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