h a n n a h b e r t r a m
The Silence of Becoming and Disappearing
The Silence of Becoming and Disappearing is a project of ephemeral site-sensitive dust works created and installed in 10 private homes during 2010. The works are developed in consultation with the residents - who are responsible for choosing both the duration of the installation and who the audience will be. The imagery created for each work is influenced by decorative elements in the homes such as wallpaper, carpets and family heirlooms, and through stories told by the residents such as; the history of previous owners, trips to Spain to see Gaudiís architecture and plans for developing a native garden.
It is an intimate project in a state of flux. Residents will experience the work during the stages of construction, viewing and deterioration -whether natural or considered. In one home the installation will last only a couple of hours, in another it will be protected by glass, some residents will let the work take itís natural course - probably long enough for further dust to settle and accidental footprints to make their mark, one home will let the weather decide and another will hide it away in a draw hoping it will last for forever.
As well as determining the duration of the work, the residents also decide who the audience is. There was a possibility that the audiences could be as private as 1 person per installation, however, the residents overwhelmingly chose to invite people to view the work. The audience for each installation varies: from Boarding house residents to a private cocktail party of 120 guests, from regional craft communities to curators of art institutions, from close family, friends and pets to complete strangers.
The type of dust used in each home has also been considered: on a marble floor, marble dust will be used, in the Grampians, ash from bushfires will be collected, dust will also be gathered from sheds, artists studios and behind couches. Perhaps the most unusual material is the cigarette ash to be used on a French polished table. Whatever the final material, it is always an overlooked residue of life in motion.
This project builds on my continued exploration of Ornament and its relationship to preciousness. By employing the traditional function of Ornament as adding value and combining it with worthless dust, my work frequently seeks to explore the preciousness in that which is impermanent rather than what is traditionally esteemed, conserved or revered as precious.
A public exhibition of the project will take place at Dianne Tanzer Gallery and Projects in late 2010.
This project has been assisted by the Australian Government through the Australia Council, its arts funding and advisory body.
This project was also made possible by:
Dianne Tanzer Gallery and Projects
The residents of the 10 homes.