Elixir and Taboo

Today I presented the results of a term’s work in my concept development class at Tafe. The topic was Food and our works had to incorporate food in some way if possible. I wound up making two small sculptures from my research. The first was playing with ideas of elixirs, infusions and preservation. I was very taken by the idea of preserving things other than food – memories, relationships, knowledge… I researched honey which is a fascinating substance and used in both preserving and embalming processes. So for this first work I used honey to preserve the memory of my close relationship with my grandmother, represented by a strand of blue pearl beads.
Sarah K Reece - Elixir
The contents then become an elixir to be taken during difficult times. The label reads:
Memories of Grandma
Dose: one thimblefull
To be taken: when lonely, afraid, or feeling unworthy

The second sculpture was playing with ideas around the sacred and taboo, particularly around our cultural reaction to the only food we make ourselves: breast milk. I used eggshells to represent new life, and turned them into breasts with the addition of sculpted polymer clay nipples. Blowing the eggs empty was fiddly and time consuming, I spent a lot of the last weekend with egg in my fringe. 🙂 I played with realistic colouring but decided to reference the use of gold leaf in art to signify the divine or sacred instead. The result has an unexpected element of humour to it, which I love. There’s also something a bit cheeky about the work, a slightly flippant take on a serious topic, a wink to fake breasts a la Monty Python, a nod to my own sexuality. Something that makes me smile: breasts in a box.
Sarah K Reece - Taboo
Plus I’m pleased with those nipples! My presentation went well, and I’m very happy to be on holidays from Tafe now. 🙂

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