Elaine Wilson

A Swarm of Follies

6 November - 12 December, 2009

Wilson’s beautifully intricate collages explore received ideas about women and femininity as well as the perpetuation of romantic and stereotypic ideals. Inspired by the writings of Joan Riviere, Bracha Ettinger and Charles Baudelaire, the images of women’s faces peer from within layers of decorative stitch and lace forms.

A Swarm of Follies pays homage to Riviere’s classic essay Womanliness as Masquerade in which she defines masquerade as a sign of women’s failure to live up to the demands of the feminine ideal. Wilson also explores these themes in a series of ceramics referencing variations on the figurine in Spoiled at the Hatton Gallery, commencing 27th November 2009.

Wilson is a Scottish-born artist now based in London. She has won many prizes and has exhibited throughout the UK as well as in Holland, Belgium and the USA.

As a child, Elaine was fascinated by the ornaments and accessories collected by various female relatives. Her current work seeks to explore the legacy of a feminine aesthetic often with reference to literature and text, particularly by writers at the turn of the century.

She concentrates on pattern, lace-making and embroidery traditionally identified as ‘women’s work’, cutting out elements of each then assembling them to draw attention to the detail and pattern thereby revealing a darker psychology of restriction and constraint.

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