Clare Robb (She/Her)
Objects trigger memories and transform recollections into palpable experiences, particularly if the artefacts constitute natural materials. In this collection of works, I Feel This Place in My Bones, pieces of jewellery as retainers of memory are made meaningful by their collection and gathering as small, discrete, often found, items. Working with bone is especially significant; as it is a material that is consistently overlooked in contemporary design, despite its popularity in past historical periods and different cultures. Bone is a sustainable resource connected to human, animal, and land. Working with bone provokes questions relating to the body of the maker and invites the viewer to explore these connections too. I Feel This Place in My Bones, challenges specific values inherent in the possibilities of corporeal material as a medium for making, as well as the framework of our physical form; and acknowledges the mundane, the found object, while adopting a form of display similar to the Wunderkammer to underline ways in which we curate our lives through the choice of items that surround us. Collecting is a means of expression, of selfhood brought about by selection and curation, presented here as miscellanea for viewers, inviting them to consider the contents of their own ‘curiosity cabinet’. This collection, which embodies wearable and sculptural pieces, encapsulates the inherent link between the viewer of a work and the intended narrative behind it.
Each piece is conceived to reconnect its audience with such things as a sense of place, nostalgia, and the human body itself; matters which are easily neglected, but which are intrinsic to our everyday lives.
The Act of Moving
Naturally Dyed Bone, Silver, Cast plant
Constructed from naturally dyed bones, this chain simulates the instinctual movement of our bodies and movement’s presence within nature itself. The bones were submerged in a dye bath of foraged blackberries for varying lengths of time to replicate the gradient, from light to dark, between the North Sea and it’s rock pools. Flora is cast and placed at the center of the chain; a symbol, to embody the connection to the environment upon which this work was created.
Oxidised Silver, Amethyst, Bone Shank
The beach- a narrow border between land and sea, fickle and treacherous, shaped with heedless violence and strewn with peculiar objects that the sea has smoothed, discarded where they lay- on the tide-line.
Contours of Rock
85 x 69 mm
Score and Fold Brass with Textured Steel pin
‘Rock and water, frost and sun; I speak of in-animate things, but the land is a living being.’ It shapes us as we shape it- it’s life glimpsed at through the converging channels, the meandering veins of its rocks and the squat, stringy roots of timeless endurance, buried within the soil; its sinews. The landscape’s pattern of being.
Dig is a project informed by an archaeological excavation at Pitskelly Farm, in Carnoustie on the East Coast of Scotland. A bone ring dating back to the Bronze Age was unearthed at this site. In homage to the woman whose remains were found alongside it, and to all historical residents, these bone rings are forged and then placed within the landscape. It is compelling how the material traces we leave behind show that we exist within a ceaseless experience, the rhythms of humans and of the land are circadian in nature.
This Place in My Bones
The work honours the mundane, the found object, therefore the display for I Feel This Place in My Bones values, and is accessible to, the viewers’ daily life. The Wunderkammer realises this concept- habitually we curate our lives through the objects we choose to surround ourselves with, as reflected in our common accumulation of souvenirs and memorabilia. Self-hood is expressed through the curation of collections and these are presented to the viewer as they envision the contents of their own curiosity cabinet.