Contemporary artist, Sarah Wilson’s latest installation was unveiled last night at the trendy Axolotl Gallery on Dundas Street, Edinburgh.
Sarah’s work is a beautifully personal collection of 18 framed resins, an engraved dressing table with its drawer full of buttons, a poem and a pair of army boots trapped in two huge blocks of resin.
Describing her work Sarah’s passion and enthusiasm is obvious,
“The project has been years in planning but finally came together when I lost my Depeche Mode concert tickets. I turned the house upside down and I unearthed a huge treasure trove of memories I’d hoarded throughout my life.
When my adoptive parents died I was faced with the task of realistically clearing out their possessions, one day my son will have to do the same for me. The little nut I found on a beach in Dubai and the chicken feather I kept will mean nothing to him, that’s when I decided to capture my memories in resin, and, like a fly caught in amber there is no order to how things were placed.
The dressing table was my mothers, I stripped back the old varnish and printed a photograph of her with her best friend from school on the top and made 72 resin buttons (one for each year of her life), each containing a scrap of lace from her wedding veil to put in the top drawer – old ladies always have a button box hidden somewhere! I engraved the mirror with the words ALIENI IURIS – the Roman law of adoption and pinned a poem I’d written in memoriam to my dad next to the picture.
The army boots belonged to my father, I called the piece “Between a Rock and a Hard Place” – mum was his rock – lets just leave it at that”
The installation was very favourably received, people engaging with the pieces and a few tears being shed at the poem – Sarah still can’t bring herself to read it and the Depeche Mode tickets are still lost!
The saddest line I’ve ever heard,
apart from that one in Bambi
Is the bit in the Railway Children
The only film where Jenny Agutter keeps her clothes on
She’s is waiting at the station
The steam is swirling round her from the old train
Running towards him she cries “daddy, my daddy”
Even before my father died that line used to make me cry.
My father wasn’t a great man,
He died from cancer and left nothing for the world to remember him
The priest phoned me to ask for my memories
He was a stand-in priest and never knew my dad
I remembered him as a man who fixed things – Even if they
Every weekend he polished his car
Each summer he grew tomatoes in the greenhouse
At the funeral we sang All Things Bright and Beautiful
It was totally inappropriate
He loved all things electronic
He loved cooking, and curries and MacEwans Export
His last words to me before he died were “I have loved you from day one”
He died and never got to meet my son
My mother and I giggled at the funeral and then we all went and got drunk
He wasn’t a great man but he was daddy, my daddy