• bowl ritual
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Kevin decorated two ceramic plates with gunpowdered line drawings which were set alight. Thank you to Kirstan Puttick, Michelle Brown and company for documenting the process.
i was very excited about joining your group on saterday and had been thinking since you spoke to me (and i gathered more from the web site) about the project. so filled with egarness on friday evening began putting together fragments of my revered and beloved grandmother and embedding the bits on the two identical clay bowls i had made a few weeks earlier. so engaged by the thinking i finally got to bed at about 3 in the morning, my head spinning with the 'aliveness' of maternal wisdom and lay unable to quiet my head for a long time.
finally as the sun broke i fell asleep and dreamed a series of terribly sad watery tragedies about my aunts and great grandmother.
so deep a sleep that i did not hear the morning start or the days rumble at all and finally woke after midday - regretting the missed event.
my humble appologies. but with infinate gratitude for the 'forced' reengagment with a host (or rather hostess) of departed women. i have two curious bowls which are now going to be processed - planning to engage with the destroy on afternoon next week - when i can get assistance in documenting it.
Where has exploring the theme of 'ansisters' taken you?
From the vague memory of the love and comfort of a grandma in the 1960’s to the discovery of a fraught nervous complex girl in the 1920’s
What are your thoughts on the world we've inherited from our ansisters?
The assumption that we are facing the troubles of the world ‘for the first time’ and not acknowledging that generations of ‘us’ have confronted the same patterns/conflicts/struggles again and again. We need to rely on what we collectively have learned, but often don’t know how to access (those knowledges.)
Do you feel you have a message from your predecessors? Or have you come to some insight in the process of investigating them? If so, what is it?
Three fairly harsh quotes best describe my learnings:
- ‘To remain ignorant of what happened before you were born is to remain always a child’ – Cicero
- ‘forgetfulness transforms every occurrence into a non-occurance’ – Plutarch
- ‘jesus and germs are everywhere so wash your hands and say your prayers’ – my grandma
Why do you engage in this creative collaboration?
The concept of collaboration as creative source I believe needs to be nurtured in a current society were ‘individual achievement’ is the desired mantra!
What are you hoping to communicate through your intended artwork?
Contemplation of the ordinariness of women – and a frankness of engagement that invites a reciprocal frankness.
Please describe this artwork/production/play/song/series of poems that you are busy with.
Thinking about an incident during the miners strike in the 1920’s which engaged and very much tested my grandmother’s moral belief as a girl. I have used a set of identical bowls and drawn reversed but matching images of my grandmother in gunpowder on them. Then ignited the trail of gunpowder to both create and destroy simultaneously. The results of this explosive buring were then processed further with raw slip, fired and finally glazed.
How has your creative journey before this project prepared you for taking part in this?
I have lived a life.
Please tell us a little more about where you've been, what you've done creatively speaking.
I teach creative problem solving and am constantly learning from this process. My painting are contemplations and the meanderings of a rascal.
Posted 26 June 2005, www.face.org.za, author: Kevin Collins.