A collaborative exploration of boundaries exhibited at Goldsmiths University in June 2022.
In How much is enough? Leslie Murdin says, ‘Psychotherapy is about setting boundaries and changing ones that are inappropriate’
I am researching internal and external boundaries; what they represent, protect, and serve. I am using any materials to hand; nothing is planned materials or objects are found in their raw state. I respond to context.
I tattooed an image on my arm and refelcted on the fact I had made a mark on the porous boundary of my own skin. My investigation has led me spontaneously and inadvertently to skin theory and skin ego. Esther Bick and Didier Anzieu wrote about and developed these notions in their work. My research is ongoing whilst considering the skin as a container or as Anzieu states, ‘a cradle of the soul’.
Also seen in the image,
‘The cradle of the soul’ II, 2022.
Plaster of Paris body cast.
‘The Cradle of the Soul II’ is a plaster cast made whilst standing in my bath before having surgery for breast cancer. Wet plaster ran down my body like milk, it was cold on my skin. I wrapped myself in the plaster bandages and then washed the hardening rivulets off afterwards.
My desire to memorialise had become a ritual: embodying my fear of change and loss.
Didier Anzieu says, ‘The skin is the interface between internal and external worlds. The skin ego function is to separate what belongs to the self and what does not’.
My cast represents a psychic second skin containing feelings, thoughts, and memories, but externally symbolises whatever the viewer brings from their own cultural lived experience.
We have recently lived with a taboo of touch for a long time, and yet without touch, we become traumatised and disconnected.
What does it mean to touch or to be touched again now?