Degree Show 2023
BA Art and Design
“The creation of something new is not accomplished by the intellect but by the play instinct” (Jung, 2021)
Throughout this project, I embarked upon an archaeological excavation of my childhood, foraging through my loft for archival matter. I stumbled across numerous mass-produced toys, including a hand-sized wooden baby book entitled ‘Pets’. Within an instant, the plaything’s vivid hues and simplistic illustrations triggered memories from infancy and a sense of nostalgia. These two factors permeate this investigation, which explores the physical and emotional connection we attach to mundane objects, particularly the relationship between children and toys. The eight abstract renditions of the book’s original imagery reimagine these concepts via the ‘play instinct’ to unleash my inner child and reflect the complexity of our current consumer culture. Tactility is a vital aspect of this work, hence why I experimented with scale, interactivity, and three-dimension with the giant baby book replica. This sculpture functions like its miniature predecessor, emphasising the impact and intrinsic role such items play in a child’s life.
“Like an archaeologist that found evidence of an era” (Pereira, 2018)
The toy box piece is an ‘accumulation’ of found objects from my childhood archive, containing staples such as Play-Doh, Lego and Bratz dolls. These artefacts provide viewers with an insight into my identity, childhood, and upbringing as a post-millennial. The portrait also highlights some of the external factors which plagued this period and continue to affect our current reality. For instance: overconsumption, hoarding, commodity culture and mass production. The familiarity of these everyday ‘ready-mades’ creates a physical and psychological connection between the viewer and the work, speaking for my experiences as an infant and evoking memories from their youth or their child’s or grandchild’s times as a youngster. This intimate concept ignites an emotional connection between onlookers and the contents of my assemblage..