'Leftovers Are Us' @ The Parasite
Natalia and I are working together to present an arrangement inspired by the Japanese art of Ikebana, a practice with a specific set of rules regarding the arrangement of still objects in a way that seeks to emphasise a sense of harmony and inner 'life'. We presented 'My Silicone Hands I Need To Wash' within MARTIN, the first vitrine housed at ABSINTHE 2 and we have since been invited by Collective Ending to occupy the second vitrine, The Parasite, which is recently been installed at the Spit & Sawdust.
She has invited me to write in a more freeform way in response to her practice and the ideas she has for within the Parasite. This text piece is my first attempt at writing in this way for an artist. I am not an artist, and regurffffffgitating the meaning of Natalia's work back to her makes me feel almost a little queasy myself.
We are presenting a new physiological freakebana installation, titled Leftovers Are Us, which draws on the human form for reference - rather than natural forms as we did within Martin.
From what I know so far about the ceramics she is making, they reference the inverse of a human form, something that fits onto a human or aids them in someway. A plaster, a tampon - are both parasites of their own in this way, they attach briefly (although to assist rather than take from) their host. They fill up. And then they are discarded.
As well as ceramics, Natalia is peppering her installation with emoji-like miniature motifs. These oreos, ice-cream cones and carrots reference digestion and momentarily, I imagine my own stomach making a quaint attempt at communicating with me in this form. She tells me her friend took one look at some of her process photos and called it a 'seaside nightmare', a 'pink sea creature washed up on the shore'. Bloated guts and plastic spill from within this freakebana. That's one stomach that didn't communicate fast enough.
Natalia's references to bodily process and organic matter strike me as most eerie when paired with latexes and silicones that wouldn't ever break down (even if you asked them nicely).
Words by Georgia Stephenson