A nasty dose of noro virus left me unable to do much for the past few days except researching and working through my thought about my works and what steps I need to take next. I have looked at my first steps to finding a away of representing FGM as a man made landscape and found that where I had inserted text to offer an explanation of why I had produced an image really detracted from what I was doing. I have reprinted two of the images without text an I am now looking to use the insight that, I have used text as I feel my image doesn’t stand up on its own. I need to look objectively at my work and assess if the work is of the quality I want and does it say what I want it too without resorting to text. I think two problems I have is confidence in my work and the need to be the best I can.
Initial images with text.
The same images with the text removed.
I feel the images have more gravity with the text removed.
I thought shhh! appropriate as it is a statement that F.G.M is something little talked about, only recently has this practice been challenged and campaigns to stop it have been started.
I don’t want the images to be salacious or offer titillation, but I do want the image to pose a question to the viewer of what is F.G.M, and its implications on those who suffer it? I wonder if in thinking about this I subliminally decided a poster like approach was needed?
I decided to look at how the vagina/vulva had been portrayed in art in the past. I came across a number of articles on line some informative but a few were reported tongue in cheek as though the vision of a womans sex was a subject of humour or pornography. I have yet to find art depicting F.G.M in the portfolio of a renowned artist, so am I looking in the wrong places or has anyone yet to feel the need to use this as subject matter? I do not want to be obviously graphic or sensationalise the subject.
I was also looking at the work of Cornelia Parker and found her works entitled Pornographic Drawings, fascinating and also inspiring. With these works Parker Uses ferric oxide on paper to produce images in the voice of the Rorschach tests (Ink blot tests) used to assess any underlying psychological issues. Ferric oxide is used in pigments and metal polishes and on magnetic tapes, and for these works Parker dissolved pornographic videos in solvent and used the resulting material to produce the blots. In another series of work Parker uses Rattlesnake venom and black ink, Anti-venom and white ink to produce similar prints called Poison and antidote drawings. I now wonder how I can use these processes to inform my work on F.G.M?