Walker’s Sculptures from the Series My Brain Has A Mind of its
Humble and ephemeral materials like insulation foam, tape and tracing paper have long been part of Meg Walker’s artist production. In her new sculpture, a protracted consideration of the workings of the brain, these fragile substances provide a counterpoint to the durable materials she also uses, like fired clay and wire. One group of sculptures is composed of a curious series of tiny clay heads with sticky-looking stuff oozing out of their sides and tops – leaking, or perhaps leaping from the brain. In other works that approach the subject in the brain /stem/tree, a particularly fine example is a delicate white wire piece bearing symbolic “fruits” impaled on the ends of its branches. Bits of paper, a pearlescent bead, toy animals and figurines as well as numerous other found objects seem to signal ideas, thought fragments or the detritus of dreams. In another piece Walker uses yellowy insulation foam of which she is fond in combination with wisps of crushed paper. Pierced with long sticks and plunked into a receptacle she offers us fragile somewhat unsettling cerebral lollipops. Sometimes Walker winds crystal beads and wires or tiny flickering lights into a mangled ganglion masses to indicate the mysterious, little understood connections and disconnections our heads constantly make both bidden and undesired. There are implications of smoke rising, short circuits, a brain ”fried”, but all the sculptures are put together with a light touch that does not permit despair, providing instead a fertile opportunity for muted synaptic responses.
Two Minds: An In-Book Exhibition of Monoprints, Drawings, Photocollage,
Two minds—one interior, like a mind map, soul map even; the other a worldly mind, a pilgrimage of the soul. Interior space, exterior space both enjoying a certain timelessness; both reaching into unedited experience. The two minds are joined by the artist: “I have long wanted to by-pass all the editing that goes on in my mind before I can get the stuff into the world” Opposed worlds but each necessary for the others existence.
Meg Walker grasps at fleeting images that arise and dissolve in her mind in the first face of this Janus-like exhibition. My Brain Has A Mind of its Own was worked on from her studio in Vermont USA. It is a courageous sequence, a snaring of moments making them timeless; it is honest and poses severe questions about identity and purpose, it encounters fear—of confrontation with loss of identity.
Pilgrim: A Shell Collection from Kirkcudbright, is made of work from her studio in Kirkcudbright, Scotland. The scallop shell, symbol of St James, object of real world pilgrimage across Europe, makes the spiritual manifest. Like a cupping hand holding hopes and aspirations, this symbol flits in and out of consciousness, conjuring dreams, hope and giving form to the evanescent interior world.
Two works, two minds from opposite sides of the globe, the US and Scotland. New and old: when one is in night–darkness the other is in day–brightness.
What is real? what is imaginary? Meg Walker’s work subverts this question. The imaginary is real and the real is a conjuring of our minds, outside time but measured in fleeting moments.
Markings is proud to show this first true in-book exhibition by this remarkable transatlantic artist
Poet and Editor
Markings #20 & #21
10th Anniversary Edition
to the portfolio of brain sculptures