In Which the Artist, From the Warmth of a Light Woollen Blanket, Contemplates the Mist Shrouded Mountains as a Metaphor for Love
15 - 21 May 2000
Fine Arts Department Gallery, NIA, Taipei
A short five weeks into my residency at the Taiwan National Institute for the Arts, I made this installation as a response to the ghostly atmosphere around campus before students arrived.
The NIA is located in the foothills of mountains some distance from Taipei city. Every day, for several weeks at the beginning of my residency, mist rolled down from the mountains enveloping the campus. Even after the students returned the mist had a way of blurring sight lines, muffling conversations and appeared to keep people remote. (Of course - all these observations might just have been my homesick projections onto the mist.)
The materials I used came from both Australia and Taiwan. The fleece was a gift from my constantly crafting, ever inspirational grandmother. Far from home, it gained greater personal significance. In my remote and still empty studio in the early days of the residency it became a talisman and something comforting to manipulate and stroke. To it I joined paintings of sheep and wool, an impractical blanket I made from satin and dacron and a machine that made mist in a bowl of water. Together these natural and manufactured elements conveyed a disconcerting atmosphere of longing warmth and cool disconnection, describing my early meditative weeks in Taiwan.
This project was assisted by the Australian Commonwealth Government through the Australia Council, its arts funding and advisory body.