Dust and text are being gathered for Week 2 of The Laboratory of Dissent. What the resident artists will do with the dust remains to be discovered. I offer:
- Three poems, handwritten
- Fragments of oil pastel, shaved
- Chalk dust and Seed dust (black sesame and linseed)
- Rinsed Eggshells, Ground
I was inspired to generate dust, rather than collect it. My own poetry acted as inspiration for what types of dust to create.
I imagined grinding material in a motar and pestle, or reducing objects to dust through scraping.
It wasn’t quite the meditative process I imagined because it required forceful repetitive action. Nevertheless the act of choosing, gathering, and processing materials added a layer of meaning and opportunity for reflection.
The eggshells were gathered and rinsed then shattered into pieces. They readily crumbled under a brisk swirling action.
The oil pastels curled off the edges of a cheese grater, but the best shavings were produced by a pencil sharpener and then crumbled between fingertips. I remember discovering this as a child, (and how when emptied into a film cannister of water you can submerge your finger in the concoction and not get it wet).
Seeds, it turns out, don’t generate dust, but a paste. I include them anyway, dissenting as they were: the ‘not-dust’. They are presented with a black ribbon instead of red to represent the dark in which seeds germinate and, well, to acknowledge they’re not dust!
Chalk, gathered from fields behind my house, ground to dust easily when scraped against ridged glass: a strange contraption designed for pureeing fruit for babies.
The result was a filmy powder, so soft to touch and not dry and coarse but smooth.
Three of my poems that relate in one way or another to the dissent.
Dear Yonat, Laurence, Susan and Clarisse,
The act of presenting you with a collection of dust, feels like an invitation in itself.
I offer this collection of dust and text for you to do with as you will (obligation free!)
For my part, I wonder if the concepts and materials introduced here might become reference points… and whether traces will be left.
But in the spirit of week 3 (‘Are we in our out?’) your interpretation, subjectivity, and ownership of any meaning produced is welcome. Make of this what you will!
‘Dust’ will appear in the gallery during Week 2 of the Laboratory of Dissent project, a new exhibition at The Winchester Gallery. Week 2 ‘Domesticating Conflicts’ takes place from Monday 31 August – Friday 4 September 2015. The resident artists during Week 2 are Laurence, Susan, Yonat and Clarisse. Maija takes up residence in the gallery the following week.