Monday, 13 August 2007
Two of four
I’m going backwards in time here - she was the second one I made of this series. After crocheting the dress and turning it inside out I plaited thin strands of hair, made coils and sewed them onto the dress. I wanted different textures for the dresses and was thinking of hairstyles from before my time, what we called Haarschnecken (literally translated: hair-snails, beautiful and gross) – hair-coils here.
Thinking about this today all kinds of associations come to my mind: good girl, neat girl, pretty girl, and a plethora of expectations and attitudes towards such a girl, a mother spending time to tenderly/carefully make up her daughter’s hair every morning, Heidi (you almost phantasise a dirndl), but also, more alarmingly, blond hair, blue eyes - Aryan ideals and all that entails. Different with the dress presented before – with buns stitched into surface: buns make me think of spinsters (which I want to reclaim as a positive term). On both dresses something starting to proliferate, like a beautiful fungus. There is an innocence here, mostly in the size of the dresses, and a fairytale character too. The hair, the material itself evoking in different degrees bodily things, instinct, desire, animal nature, wildness, untamedness. I like that all these diverse elements coexist here, the pretty and the disconcerting, the domesticated and the wild, innocence and animal nature. Like the complex beings that we are...