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BENEATH A SUNKISSED BOW with works by AMY PARKER and TOBI KECK at HOLDEN GARAGE curated by ELLA KRIVANEK [from 20220219 to 20220419]
[Photos: Thomas Krüger]
Imagine that you are standing in the bow of a majestic boat. The sun is sprinkled across the water like a letter from your girlfriend full of glitter. The heat makes your head swing and snap; you try to stay awake. Your reflection is vibrantly coloured but obscured by moving water.
The gentle rocking of the ship lulls you into a stupor. Your dome tips forward and, like a wrecking ball, crashes down, flipping your body over the gunwale. It pierces the surface of the water and you sink, opening your eyes to see only darkness.
You are very scared, but your movements are slow and balletic, like a foetus in the womb. You watched a YouTube video of a survivalist who said to stay calm if you find yourself in a car that has crashed into a body of water. Follow your bubbles, follow your bubbles.
Amy Parker visited the Antarctic Division of the Department of Energy and Environment to collect the faecal matter of krill from the tanks of the scientists there. The krill had ingested microplastics and with special mandibles in their guts they mashed it into nanoplastic. It passed through their “skin”, dispersing through their bodies deep.
Into their DNA. Porosity is a double-edged sword. It permits entry of toxic things but also reminds us that we are not hermetic vessels. This is happening to you too - petrochemicals crossing through your cell membrane as you read this. The microplastics had made some of the krill infertile. While arranging Amy’s winding lead (De: Blei) sculptures I wore gloves, unsure if the elemental metal would taint my skin, afraid.
Her submerged ceramics have been fired and re-fired, glazed in krill shit that looks like nutritious algae but is not, and buried in sand and stone. They are illuminated by the thin membrane of a SCOBY lamp. Scientists are mystified as to how concentric circles appear in bodies of water. Currents of water wear down sharp edges and make beautiful sea glass gems. Do you feel worn down and beautiful?
You turn gently onto your back and allow your arms and legs to float upwards - a reverse cat fall. You watch the pale blue spheres of air emerge from your mouth and ascend with fairy-lightness. Your ears are fogged over as water courses into and through them. Split and saline mix in your mouth. Your blood pressure rises as the body of water encloses you in a hugging grip.
Your innards tighten with a glance at Tobi Keck’s archetypal face, and you both glare ferociously at one another for a time. Rough and impermeable aluminium scratches against the ceiling of this space, formed in an apotropaic grimace. Were you a Narcissus? Is this you still looking for your own image, even now? This face permeates the land above and below. It’s tempting to keep staring and sinking, away from and towards this lure-laiden visage.
Your reflection in the water’s surface is magnified and terrible. But it’s much clearer from below, and much truer.
You have entered the land Beneath a sunkissed bow.
[Text: Ella Krivanek]
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