3D- Memory

For memory I wanted to look at mother-daughter relationships, themes of care, intimacy, tenderness, nostalgia and the difference between providing basic care and acts of love.

I very vivid memory I have of being younger is having my hair washed by my Mum. Up until a certain point this would have been her providing basic care, but past an age when I was able to do it myself, it would have been an act of love and care. I now think having your hair washed is really intimate.

I knew I wanted to use performance, and was interested in collaborative performance. I felt the involvement of other people would mean it wasn’t just about my personal experiences and relationship with my Mum. I also wanted to use it to communicate how throughout life, you subconsciously search for your Mum in relationships and friendships with people to an extent. Or, at least, your Mum has the most significant impact upon your attachment style and the way you form relationships with other people.

I eventually decided I wanted to do a series of collaborative performances, with specific people, in which they would wash my hair for me. I wanted them to contribute to the performance in some way, I gave them complete creative control over exactly how they would contribute, whether it was by reciting a poem, talking about a specific memory, including objects of significance etc. Each one happens in a different bathroom, documented by using a tripod and camera to film.

The overall idea is mine, and the series itself is my work. I invited people to participate in the project, yet each individual performance is collaborative.

 

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Performance piece- Conceptual

I used my previous video piece as inspiration for a performance. I decided I wanted to go to Pizza Paradise in town, a dine-in/takeaway near the Cowgate thats open until 4am, and howl like a wolf inside where people were eating after a night out. I chose Pizza Paradise because it’s of a similar chaotic vibe to smoking areas.

When it came to doing it, I knew I wouldn’t be able to do it sober, which isn’t totally dissimilar to how people often have to be drunk or on drugs, without inhibition, in order to be reaching out for connection, affection or attention. I drank until I felt I could ignore the humiliation I would feel and went into Pizza Paradise with Beth and Nicole, who were both going to be filming the performance as I wanted to make sure I had good documentation.

The dine-in area was too empty and so we went somewhere else in the mean time and ended up performing in numerous locations across town on a Saturday night. I howled in McDonalds, where I was practically ignored other than being vaguely acknowledged by two drunk lads eating on the floor talking.

”Must be some art student wank shit.”

”Aye.”

I then did it again next door in KFC, until security came over and told me to get out, but as I was leaving a group of lads all starting howling back in response.

I then howled in front of a small corner shop where people often go to buy fags and snacks after being out, a small group of people just a bit older than me were stood outside. One of the guys in the group weren’t impressed and shouted at me.

”Get a fucking group, you’re no a wolf.”

After, one of his friends came up to me and spoke to me, he asked if I was okay or if I wanted any help. His concern felt sincere but not patronising, he put his hand on my shoulder as her spoke to me.

”Are you okay? Like, I don’t think you’re weird but, some people will definitely think you’re weird. Are you trying to get a taxi? I can get you a taxi.”

When he spoke to me I stopped as I hadn’t really considered what I’d do if someone interacts with me, so I just told him I was fine and didn’t want a taxi, I pointed over to where Nicole and Beth were filming and he understood it was for some kind of project.

By this point Pizza Paradise was much busier, but mainly outside the shop. I stood outside where most of the people where and began howling. For a while, people ignored me, until I started to attract the attention from a group of older adults in their mid to late 40’s who thought of me as a freak show providing amusement. They got out their phones and began recording me and laughing, pointing me out to other people. One of the older men came up to me and put his hand on my shoulder, looking at me condescendingly, and asked:

”Is that a phone number?”

I ignored what he said and continued to howl in his face.

”Right…That’s normal.”

Around this time, clubs were closing as people were getting moved out onto the street, so I headed down toward Hive where the streets were packed. I performed while slowly walking down the street, the majority of people ignored me, apart from a group of people my age who joined in and jumped in front of the cameras, howling with me before running off. Some people responded with howls while walking past.

A group of 3 slightly older men surrounded me and I stopped walking but continued to howl. It was instantly clear they heard this as some weird mating call, one of them reached out while howling and touched my face with his hand. I frowned and pulled back but continued. Two of them took my refusal and walked off, one of them stayed next to me while his friends attempted to get him to leave.

”Come on! Leave her alone, she’s a wolf!”

 

(video to be added)

 

 

 

Conceptual- Nation

From Niamh Mairead Cullen-Dunphy on Vimeo.

Exploring how living in a capitalist society means living in an individualist society. We live separated and isolated away from one another, tunnel visioned down into our own lives, forgetting empathy and self-awareness.

”The myth of the individual has left us disconnected, lost and pitiful”- Kate Tempest

Kate Tempest is a poet, playwright and rapper from East London who speaks of the destructive evil of capitalism, the damage of individualism and the importance of empathy. Her work is so emotionally charged and speaks volumes of an era, she’s been likened to a modern day profit and has previously been huge inspiration for my work. She articulates in words what I have tried to communicate through art. I think she’s definitely relevant to this particular work.

The video piece above is about loneliness, in club smoking areas I always get the feeling that everyone is desperately reaching out, drunkenly attempting to connect and communicate. I showed this by using the audio of wolf howls to remind us that we’re pack animals and also to liken the behaviour in club smoking areas to howling out for members of your pack. I filmed the smoking area of Bongo club on a night out, from a perspective similar to CCTV, a disconnected position of observance rather than filming form a perspective of someone involved and socialising.

 

 

 

 

#4

Today I looked at an article about a Tory politician said on TV that women shouldn’t be able to have an abortion even after being impregnated via rape.

I started thinking about “pro-life” protesters and how the largest following of pro-lifers are based on America and the irony of that. The land of the free and the brave believe that every life matters, unless you’re black or lived in Vietnam, Iraq, Iran, China, Afghanistan, Libya, Sudan etc etc.

The pure hypocrisy of America claiming to be pro-life would be humorous if it wasn’t so fucked up.

I made some respones to pro-life posters and signs immitating or replying to their slogans using images from wars in places such as Vietnam, Syria and Iraq.

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I then realised that I didn’t even new to change the slogans that they use and could just leave them as they are and pair then with similar imagery.

Day Today #1 – chosen piece

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Stencil over collage + stencil itself, taped together.

”But every cunt knows that”- A dismissive remark towards todays headlines, because is any of it really new? It’s become the norm to see violence and threats of war. It isn’t NEWs that Kim Jong Un is a prick, it isn’t NEWs that there’s constant death and destruction or the threat of, it isn’t NEWs that we’re in possession of nuclear weapons, with no other purpose but to use on each other. It’s nothing new that people are living in fear.

Also started to look at how he’s threatening to cause so much death but has simultaneously helped create life and is expecting his 3rd child in February, leading me on to think about contradictions and the visualisation of the word.