Honours Fine Art Travelling Award.
INTIMUS BOUND is a playful exploration of the search for emotional intimacy through imagined, metamorphic and metaphorical narratives. This body of work encompasses a year-long project contained in a single artist’s book.
In what often appears to be an increasingly divided and digitally-saturated world, meaningful connections with others, ourselves and the wider, the natural world can often feel out of reach.
I’ve become curious about what emotional intimacy is – particularly in the aftermath of the recent pandemic. Emotional intimacy is so critical to our psychosocial wellbeing, and I wonder to what extent, or even if, we are aware of its role in our daily lives.
This project is expressed in metaphors. Materially, all of the pages integrate a range of printmaking processes on a variety of Japanese papers. The papers, themselves, are born from the unhurried, close interaction between humans and nature – it speaks the language of intimacy before it even passes through my hands. These delicate, yet strong, papers are then transformed into prints and papercuttings. Both processes involve a slow labour which demands care, patience, playfulness and trust – all necessary aspects of emotional intimacy.
The search for connection is represented in the collages of exquisite corpses and whimsical beings traversing through fantastic landscapes, and the book, as a whole, is a metaphor for a being. Books, like all of us, are containers – portals to other worlds with exteriors that are not always very easy to read, but find subtle ways to draw us in.
While the encounter is dependent on active viewer participation, it is not intended for the public eye. Intimacy depends on private moments. As trading in our privacy for security is becoming increasingly accepted, I worry about how this will affect the health of our relationships in the future (or even now). Although positive emotional intimacy requires a softening of boundaries, it requires boundaries, nonetheless. Viewers are invited to reflect on these and other ideas surrounding intimacy as they experience the book in a one-on-one presentation.