Monument to the Winch

March 12, 2017 § Leave a comment

I took a drive out to the top of Lewis, near Port of Ness. A beautiful white sand beach is nearby, light blue waves, dark black rock with green sea moss. Theres all sort of tendrils of driftnet and rope that has washed up, half buried. I collected some as well as a piece of driftwood, to weave together and make a sort of windchime, or weathervane. Driving into the village I saw the brutalist concrete harbour, a zig zag of stone sheltering moorings and a slipway, with a big breaker from larger storm waves. The old winch house sits at the end of the slipway though the winch is long gone.

Found fishing rope, seaweed and driftwood collected from Traigh Shanndaigh near Eòrapaidh, Isle of Lewis, installed as a temporary decoration to the old winch-house on the ageing concrete and stone breakwater harbour at Port of Nes. Installation documentation. 2017.

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Flotsam on the Clyde

February 20, 2017 § Leave a comment

Yesterday a walk on the shores of the Clyde River at Helensburg, waters which feed into the firth of Clyde. There were many mussel shells, empty and brittle, cracking beneath foot, creating smaller pieces still on their way to sand. Lots of detritus, industrial, from the maritimes. Sea glass, all shades of green that I could see.

Inspired by shapes here, voids, the nesting of items together and items out of their natural element. The colours muted, with gradients. I like the idea of slipways. The idea of boueys adrift, unanchored. What is it to be ‘unanchored’ or set adfrift? Cast away, come loose?  Unsecure, lost, lost at sea. Never making it to sea.

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This is Spiritual and Physical: Seventh Gallery

April 3, 2016 § Leave a comment

My work This is Spiritual and Physical is showing at Seventh Gallery in Melbourne, through to 15 April 2016. Thank you to Kate Clark for her work on the soundscape.

This is Spiritual and Physical presents video shot in Scotland and Iceland over several years that documents farming and rural life and sites of pilgrimage. The imagery explores the physical and aesthetic characteristics of landscape use for work and that which is visited for its spiritual significance, and aims to elucidate the correspondence between the output of the work generated by a body performing repetitive labour and that generated by spiritual pilgrimage.

This is Spiritual and Physical, HD video with sound, 19m 16s, 2016. Stills:

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Songs

September 27, 2015 § Leave a comment

I sing, an improvisation of sorts, within a five-domed concrete sculpture Tvisongur by Lukas Khne. Each dome produces a different tone, and the sculpture can be seen as a visualization of the five-tone harmony tradition. Tvisongur is in Seydisfjordur in the east fjords of Iceland. It is a 15 min hike up the side of a hill.

I took longer recordings, to be used as sound for an upcoming video work.

September 27, 2015 § Leave a comment

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I was in Scotland and Iceland recently, to see friends, and to collect some new work, I have a solo show in March/Apr next year at Seventh Gallery. It was a month away but not nearly enough.

nomorepotlucks: Blood Work: Magdalena Olszanowski – Marlaina Read

June 9, 2015 § Leave a comment

I first encountered Magda’s work in 1996, when, as young women, we experimented with self-imaging practices and maintained popular websites – before the internet boom in which social networking and blogging platforms emerged. We both went on to develop our artistic and academic practices in the context of the institutionalized art world, but have continued to share and collaborate. Her ongoing series of work that started in 2005 depicts menstruation. It draws on ideas of transgression, the abject, and boundaries, and it displays a playfulness often missing from discourse around the female body.

Olszanowski’s work was initially a response to the Cartesian history of prioritizing the disembodied self and the established scientific discourse based on intellectual detachment, rationality, and objectivity – leaving the state of corporeality and the body as irrational, uncontrolled, and menstruating. In this misogynist discourse, much extended by Freud, corporeality belongs to the feminine, producing the woman as dangerous and fleshy. Like much feminist work, such as Valerie Solanas’s SCUM Manifesto, Magda’s work welcomes the dangerous and fleshy self. We shared a lengthy conversation across many time zones focused on her history with menstruation, her work, and the importance of leading an embodied practice.

Read more at nomorepotlucks

Blood Work: Magdalena Olszanowski

Blood Work: Magdalena Olszanowski

December 12, 2014 § Leave a comment

Farmers—the cult of work, the mythology of spiritual lands and the ritual of repetitive action.

In any case we have machines and houses and we are all safe. The first image has the midnight sun, or midnight twilight.

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