Kathleen Lodge (She/Her)
‘Home is where you have a good hairdresser and a reliable shag.’
Through both humour and pathos, my work aims to get to the heart of our constructions of home and place. Engaging with the cliché, the banal, the commonplace, and relying on a very British vernacular – sometimes regionally specific to the Midlands – I aim to elevate such subject matter. I find what is often considered mundane to be what makes the world go around: people getting dressed in the morning; people going to work; people going to the pub; people fancying each other. I apply my own fleeting thoughts and feelings about these parts of life, and other people’s flippant conversation on the street or the telly, onto permanent objects, using text, because I feel they deserve it.
Increasingly this engagement with language and the community has become formalised by distinctly participatory work. Through asking the public a question, looking outwards rather than inwards, I’ve found a genuineness- often a bathos- perhaps an aura, that is difficult to find elsewhere. As a result, my work has become increasingly site-based, specifically the pub, the nail salon, the home and the shop. These are places we retreat to feel better. They are also commercial spaces, advertised to us as a place our wants and needs are commodified, and purchasable. In response to these ideas, I use text on mass produced objects, with their own existing associations as recognisable everyday objects, alongside printmaking and digital imagery, so as to produce work that at once lacks my physical autograph but is also deeply personal. I borrow the associations these mediums hold with consumerism, reproduction, functionality, accessibility and familiarity. My practice aims to talk to issues of identity, despite a commitment to the use of irony, with a warmth, that betrays my affection for the people and places I engage with.
For me, now, Glasgow and Birmingham are both my home.