I am presenting two new works and a favourite of mine as part of the group exhibition A Delayed Family at Central Saint Martins Shows 2022.
Through a cathartic focus and preservation of elements found in what is familiar, the domestic and the everyday, the artists question the distorted perceptions of their reality, the slippery nature of remembering, and the traces culture leaves.
With an obsession of elaborately constructed figures and reviving what has been discarded, the mediative consumption of time and the laborious craft of collection and archive, “A Delayed Familiarity” showcases a multitude of interdisciplinary practices that explore both the artists’ and viewers’ perceptions of identity, narrative, agency and time.
Isabella Sherwani-Keeling Jannat Hussain
From the 16th to the 22nd June, It’s Heavier Than It Looks will be shown as an accompanying piece to Not Even The Minimum .
First in the series Uniforms, using the white shirt of the worker, these two works deal with the emotional weight of unpaid (in-kind) labour. The sleeves weigh 8Lb21 to represent the U.K. national minimum wage (£8.21) at the time of making. Not to receive a wage becomes a weight that gradually takes us down until we can no longer play.
The series Uniforms
Clothes have a hierarchy, are a hierarchy. This is critical to society because this is how society distinguishes between its members.
The uniform is a visual sign of distinction, a difference causing a diffidence, deference, or a defiance.But not any uniform… An apron, a lanyard, a polyester shirt with embroidered logo, a hairnet, a pinny, hospital clogs, a high-viz, … A synthetic surface, 100% viscose, strong and versatile, highly flexible and pliable, great ease of manipulation, man-made for manual work, cheap and non-recyclable, to be replaced regularly. Tokens of low status, these are the uniforms that interest me. Because of those that wear those uniforms, those at the bottom of the pyramid, those that have no choice… The nobodies. I am searching for their form, their poetics. The theory of the Abject, the concept of Arendt’s ‘Excluded’, Agamben’s ‘the People’ and Fanon’s ‘Les Damnés de la Terre’ enrich my understanding.
It’s a question of power imbalance, what structure does to a body and the violence we do to each other.
This series speaks subtly of complicated issues about agency, status, marginalisation, emotion, and humanity.The ambition is for the uniform to convey a humanity on its surface, on its fabric via the corporal frame, the postures that can trigger an ‘emotional contagion’ in the viewer.