A step, a fall
A step, a fall, 2022, 120 x 118 x 27 cm, hand felted merino wool, gold thread, silk organza, bronze
Just as time asserts its passage upon our bodies, the last two and a half decades have etched themselves upon this felt object: the protein-based fibre has been preyed upon by silverfish, leaving it irrevocably changed. This work was first intended as a kind of protective swaddle. Coded symbols (of my own invention) were stitched inside the soft, enveloping wool to create a talisman of sorts. Never publicly shown, it has always felt deeply personal and somehow precious (like a component of myself, strangely separated) and has travelled with me in my various homes across the country and back.
Over the past year, I have stitched into the damaged areas with gold thread – from tiny apertures to disintegrating expanses, barely intact. It felt like a slow and reverent act, honouring both the object and its impermanence. This methodical and loving repair has transformed a humble object into something of complex and profound beauty. Taken from my garden and cast in bronze, the eucalyptus branch that supports the felt object has similarly undergone a profound transformation.
Throughout my practice, I have returned to the core themes of transformation and the interconnectedness of all things. A step, a fall continues with these concepts, speculating on the nature of being by referring to the everyday alchemy of growth and decay.