Travelling Alone. Waterside Project Spoace. London. 2009.
Janet McEwan’s cards are mementos for the future. The keepsakes are simple, prosaic objects, like shells collected from a beach, marked with a few lines of poetry. But the artist does not keep them - she sendthem away, risking them being lost in the postal service.
This process mirrors thfunction of our memory - sendinthe incomprehensible away for processing at a later stage, anusing the simplest of shapes as index entries for a larger whole.
“I posted these ‘cards’ to myself while travelling on my own in the North East of Scotland where I had lived for 15 years before moving south. I felt dislocated in many arenas of my life and sending the objects/cards to myself was a reassuring ritual: a way of trying to make sense of the place I had found myself in.
Externalising my own feelings, I wondered if they would be lost in transit, rejected as unsuitable, and was surprised when I returned that like me, they arrived at their
destination in one piece.”
McEwan’s work uses the landscape and heritage of her environment as source material, often using stone and found materials. She currently lives and works in Cornwall; the cards represent a bridge between her past and present locations, abstracting the physical and temporal distance. Pierre d'Alancaisez
Everything starts with an airport. Occasionally a train station, and rarely a harbour terminal, but mostly an airport. The displacement, fleeting encounters, accelerated adaptation in each new environment all stand in ironic contrast to the jetsetting lifestyle in the advertised job description. Works in the programme reflect on the artists’ journeys – both literal, on tour between airports, venues and hotels, as well as personal, longing for things far away.
Waterside Project Space
Saturday, 20 June 2009, 9pm