Monday, October 12, 2009

:: Bilateral :: Two Sides - One Story

-Therapy - Bilateral - Two Sides - One Story-
Fleur Kelsey - 2009

This work is grounded in the lived experience of mental illness and its treatment. The work sits in the borderland of mental health treatment, between institutional style treatment and the integrated, consumer led recovery approach which is being to be implemented around New Zealand. This work seeks to bridge the space between institutions of the past, the artist own experiences and the new paradigm for treatment which positions consumers as active agents of their own recovery and wellness.

Opening Night 5th October 2009 @ ROCDA Gallery

Clinicians have always had the power in mental health treatment. Traditionally they are the gatekeepers to madness, being able to label and treat without regard for the wider social context that people find themselves in. Clinicians power to label and describe shape the outcomes, attitudes and qualitative experience of those seeking services.

Opening Night 5th October 2009 @ ROCDA Gallery

This work is concerned with subjectivity; the lived experience of self and circumstances. With the changing dynamic between medical professionals and patients the subjectivity of the individual is moved to the centre. This echoes trends in the world wide mental health consumer movement, where we become the authorities on our own illness and its treatment. The right to articulate and determine our own treatment is seen as essential to recovery, wellness and wholeness.

Therapy Installation (Mixed media on Paper) consists of over 500 pieces
Therapy 2 (mixed media on paper)

Therapy 4 (mixed media on paper)

The paper drawing installation is created from the artists hospital file, detailing the time around her treatment with Electro Convulsive Therapy (ECT), and will be an exploration of retrospective collaborative note writing. This work explores the ideas around objective and subjective experience, authorship of experience, and the client’s right to shape their own treatment experience.

Part of Therapy 1 (Mixed media on paper)

This work uses the artist own history to explore mental health treatments from a lived position, making sense of the experience and offering it up as an exploration of contemporary issues. The work draws on a tradition of feminist investigation into women’s experience and the meanings of experience. Authorship and the authority to reveal what goes on behind closed doors is an important consideration with this body of work, as the artist claims her right to display and modify her history.

A View to Somewhere Else
A View to Somewhere Else 1 -3 (Acrylic on Linen)

A View to Somewhere Else 1 (Acrylic on Linen)

A View to Somewhere Else 2 (Acrylic on Linen)

The complete series of Bilateral is yet to be completed by Fleur Kelsey, Fleur has completed 2/3rds of the work and still has around 6 paintings to complete and numerous installations pieces to produce.

Corridors Of Power
Corridors of Power 1-3 (Acrylic on Linen)

Corridors of Power - 1 (Acrylic on Linen)

The use of architectural space is a central device in the works. This enables the work to explore the tension between interior/private and exterior/public space and lives.

Paintings address the site of treatment, the endless rooms, the physical space; and will echo the institutional spaces of places like Cherry Farm and Seacliff. These will take on a life of their own and will stand in for the body that receives treatment- reflecting the fleshy pink vulnerability of our corporeality. The paintings will vibrate with the tension of what has happened and what is about to happen. Rooms become passageways to unknown terror or sweet compassion, and anticipation and adrenaline inform the mood.

The Walk
The Walk 1 -2 (Acrylic on Linen)

The Walk 1 (Acrylic on Linen)

The acrylic paintings depict the spaces in which mental health treatment occurs. The paintings have luscious surfaces, created by multiple layers of transparent glazes and will echo the internal spaces of the body.

These paintings will be installed in groups creating a cohesive horizon line of odd angles and endless corridors.

The paper drawing installation which utilises Fleurs personal hospital file, in combination with drawing and writing by the artist which responds to that file. The work is comprised of approximately 500 individual paper pieces of A4 or less size arranged together in a manner similar to the example of previous work. This creates an obsessive experience of multiple views, perspectives and information.

Check out the lead up, press releases and promotion material of Bilateral here

Fleur hopes to display the work in full some time early 2010 to express an interest in Bilateral please contact fleur on or directly on +64 03 487 7786

All Images Are Copyright