Saturday, 16 May 2009

'Humming the Air'

A recently completed textile 'Humming the Air' will be included in the 62Group exhibition 'Bending the Line' to celebrate the bicentenary of the poet Alfred Lord Tennyson, at the Hub, Sleaford, Lincolnshire, 11th July to 6th September 2009. The photograph is not a good one I'm afraid as it was done in a rush before I had to pack it up to catch the carrier office before it closed! Last minute again! I hope you can see it well enough to make out that it is constructed from multiple layers of tracing paper shapes, previously machine stitched to make lots of perforations. The lines of the holes spell out the letters of its title. Threads were then threaded through some of the holes to string them all together. The idea is to make the words appear as if they are falling out of the wall panel, which has photocopies of pages from Tennyson's poems.

For those who might be interested in the meaning of this piece I need to explain the term 'ekphrasis'; this is a term from Greek rhetoric that originally meant the intense description of a thing, conjured so vividly in words as to appear before the mind's eye. Andrew Motion uses the phrase 'humming the air' to describe how poets should use this to make words appear to lift off the page when writing poetry.

1 comment:

  1. I love this! Thanks for putting it on your blog.