Wild, yes. (2017)
The art I developed during my residency at Heritage Hill Museum and Historic Gardens in Dandenong, Victoria was installation-based, so these works are a record of my practice, with an accompanying text. The series is called Wild, yes. (2017) and responds to a statement found on the wall of the Coach House (presumably left by a previous resident artist) that read, 'yer baby is wild'. I responded to the statement materially, by installing found fabric into the gaps in the Coach House walls, and textually, with prose. Wild, yes. continued my exploration of the body and how it is perceived and represented, and drew on the particularities of the Coach House, including its history of ownership and occupation, especially by women. I was inspired by the beauty and wild excess of the plant life in the surrounding garden, and initially experimented with text written in salt across the Coach House floor (a favourite material and method in my installation practice). Later, I introduced piles of garden off-cuts to explore the nature of wildness in relation to the condition of cultivation. I returned, in the end, to the building itself, using its own gaps as sites of ‘wild’ growth and as points from which to critique the constructs and constrictions of culture and language. The choice to use fabric not only contrasted the dense brickwork but also referenced traditions of craft long cultivated by women.
Rebekah Pryor, November 2017
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