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The Story of How It Was Made

By Jessica Staple

12-15 December 2017

 

This exhibition tells stories. It tells the story of an eight year long career at the Visual Arts Department where I have been a student, teacher and technician. Much of this time has been spent in the screen printing, lithographic and intaglio studios. These spaces, the various roles I play in them, the media and machinery with which I work as well as all the scraps, proofs and offcuts resulting from this engagement have greatly impacted on my practice, often becoming the very subject matter of the artworks. In this way, the artworks also tell the story of their own making.

 

Alongside these narratives sit various myths, folktales and fairy stories, important sources of inspiration and research material for my practice. In some instances, the stories are directly referenced while in others the connections are more subliminal. During the period of my master’s studies, I explored those I have broadly defined as ‘Stories of the Underworld-Otherworld’. In these tales, characters journey across physical or metaphorical thresholds, often through a process of descent, and consequently undergo some kind of transformation. In some cases, entry follows a natural progression (such as death), whereas in others it is only made possible by performing various rites of passage or undertaking a series of tasks. In the context of the artist’s book on show, these stories take on a more prominent standing where the creative language of storytelling is used to express something of the process of artistic creation..