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Onskuld en vryheid (2009)

Paint nuggets, particles and cakes, silver plastic plates, table and pillow with string

This work is based on a poem “die verblyf van dae” written by the well-known Free State poet and specialised surgeon Gilbert Gibson. The poem evokes powerful imagery that relates to schizophrenic narcism and describes a state free from one’s own accountability towards any harm we cause that leads to personal loss and death. The experience of reading and re-reading the poem transcended into an impulsive urge to scrape out dried paint and paint cakes from paint containers. This action became a desperate, obsessive, symbolic “rescue mission”, by literally saving the dry unused paint and in turn saving myself from painting another aesthetically pleasing painting. I experienced a state of disgrace comforting the empty wall- where a painting should possibly hang. I suspended a scummy pillowcase on the corner where wall and ceiling meet, ballooning it in a heart – its inner shape suggesting a rectum that returns a smile at me reminding me that I am victimized by the mere existence of this work. While stacking paint cakes, I thought about my short lifespan and all the paintings I will never be able to paint.

Thresholds: Poems, death and dying, chemically fabricated paints and other complex chemistries, geo-gnostic eye, restorative justice