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STUDIO CAPARRELLI

ARTISTS

-Susan Stockwell
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Statement

Susan Stockwell's work takes the form of drawings, collage, sculpture and installation.
It is primarily concerned with transformation. The materials used are the everyday, domestic and industrial disposable products that pervade our everyday lives. These materials are manipulated and transformed into art objects.

Vividly symbolic 'maps' of Britain, South America and Africa are literally 'stitched up' commodities - constructed from tea bags, coffee filter papers and rubber tyre inner tubes they questions the historic and present day trading of luxury commodities and address the post and neo-colonial implications of Global commerce. Paper is the material most often chosen, maps, dress making patterns, tea bags, coffee filters, waxed paper portion cups and toilet tissue are used to make objects that act as ready-made signifiers. The processes of working with materials - accumulating, stacking, sewing and quilting manipulate and transform, sometimes minimally affecting the material in sensitive and subtle ways or highlighting characteristics, such as paper's ethereal and fragile qualities. For example, Stockwell made a body of work from toilet tissue (1990’s) -sponsored by Kleenex who enabled access to huge industrial size rolls and sheets of fragile paper. The translucent floating sheets became light tunnels and huge ponderous stacks, alluding to monumentality and ancient civilisations, yet they were temporal and fragile, not easily recognisable as toilet tissue.

In the American magazine Art on Paper the art critic Anat Rosenberg writes,

'Stockwell's works are indeed accumulations-of the debris of everyday life. However they conjure up additional implications of accumulation, the strongest being the desire to appropriate everything from luxury goods to land to people. And in mapping out her chosen locations, Stockwell reminds us of the cost of this far- flung impulse'.
- Museum and Gallery Reviews July/August 2000.

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