The participatory installation, Can I Have That Without Mayonnaise Please? (2023), asks viewers to write down something they wish they had said but never did. Participants are then invited to put their confession through a paper shredder which hangs from the ceiling, forming a pile of shredded regrets which accumulates over time. The artwork acts as an archive and recording of the footfall of fleeting social interactions that take place during the exhibition, which is emblematic to the unnoticed exchanges of everyday life. This work was Inspired by a previous performance I made that explored the everyday phenomenon known as staircase wit; The Spirit of The Staircase (2023), took form as a cathartic, live exchange. The participatory performance asked groups of strangers to anonymously write down something they wish they had said but didn’t. These confessions were handed back out at random and read out loud. This unique situation allowed participants to feel a lack of vulnerability whilst being observed up close and invasively. By subverting confessional roles, viewers quietly question complex social relationships and moments of intimacy in anonymity. When I threw my confession into a void, where did it go? Did it touch anyone else and stay with them? Do I feel any different now it has been said aloud? Will I still carry this weight on my shoulders? Through dialogue and instruction, participants’ visceral responses inform the direction of my work. The mutability of my practice is informed by my understanding of how transient our lived experiences are. Growing up with no consistent home, change is in my nature and I tend to project this into my art. For what started as an exploration of my own feelings of estrangement, that stem from my experiences being mixed race, my practice has developed into a dialogue with my participants that asks them to renegotiate their perceptions of how intertwined we are with one another, especially in the most fleeting of everyday interactions. In the face of the lonely, vulnerable, awkward and regretful ways of life, my practice is a homage to the intimate, collectivity to be found in these everyday situations. (An image of Can I Have That Without Mayonnaise Please? Is currently unavailable but will be uploaded soon.)
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