Often I make things with no idea what they are for. In this particular case it seems I was making objects nearly ten years ago for a process that was emerging in its own (slow?) time.
In searching for suitable and relevant materials for a ritual marking my ‘commitment to ritual’, I came across a bundle of sticks I had been binding during a trip to the lochs in Scotland around 2005 or 2006. I had been staying on the waters edge in a tiny little cottage with friends. We could see seals swimming in from the ocean there, and the reflections of the hills, trees and sky in the loch were mesmerizing.
I spent the entire trip in the porch over looking the water. I had a bundle of sticks and a ball of linen with me in my suitcase and I spent my time bounding the tips of the sticks with the yarn all week. It was a meditation of sorts, and a labour intensive process that spoke to me of commitment and devotional practice.
Once completed these sticks showed monumental focus in the quietest way. The materials were humble and the process simple and repetitive. When I offered them up into the air and they landing on the floor in Fabrica Gallery their random assemblage reminded me of a child’s game I used to play called Pick Up Sticks. They cast shadows upon one another where they lay and formed a grid, an elevated surface above the floor, on which to throw the cinders from a burning performance in Yorkshire.