St Medard & The Devil
The Sialia Marbles
Bluebird stands before Daphne and wants to reach out, her eyes aren’t closed but hollow.
Stemming from the sacred energy of traditional sculpture halls, The Sialia Marbles is an ode to my fleeting imagination.
Created over 3 years, The Sialia Marbles is presented as a collection of over 40 hand coloured photographic prints. Each print forms part of a larger fictional anthology, illustrating fragments of tales I find sanctuary within. When viewed together as a collection, The Sialia Marbles becomes a wing of my own Le Musee Imaginaire (Museum without Walls): An idea initially proposed in 1947 by Andre Malraux, defined as, ‘the personal or cultural mental storehouse of images of the noblest works of art’ (Haley, 2002). Malraux’s saw the ability of art to transcend metamorphosis: where time may alter their meaning or they may fall into obscurity. I expand this idea to mean that the dialogue of art history should exist within each person’s imagination with photographic representations of arts being the best method to support each person’s fictional museum: photographs become an accessible earthly embodiment of individual thoughts, and as an extension they are the only lasting relic of each ephemeral performance of the characters in The Sialia Marbles.
During the beginning of the ‘Museum Age’ in the 18th century, writer Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe discussed mythical sculpture as living in a world where they ‘reign in splendid isolation’ (On the Laocoon Group, 1798); a description which sings in melody with the dissociative nature of my mind. In reaction, I cast stories in a form of fictional rigor mortis, through the symbolic reference to the weight and endurance of marble sculpture. Tableaus react only within themselves: anatomist studies corpse, a creature is hunted, angels embrace the sanctuary of one another. Within the anthology, my own fragments of visual tales are complemented by visual references to characters (and their artists) who have become beautiful stains on my own visual tapestry, such as Daphne and Saint Lucy.
The Sialia Marbles are each cracked, amputated, narratives, stemming from subconscious feelings and lacking any hardened structure. Pictorially solidifying them becomes a medicine, ensuring I am able to hold onto them for a little while longer.