Agents of Deterioration – Emily Outhwaite

Agents of Deterioration is this week’s Link Gallery exhibition by Interactive Arts student Emily Outhwaite.

Emily’s artist statement for the exhibition:

‘As an artist I am interested in the objects that surround us in everyday life, in particular those objects that have signs of personal use and adornment; signs of deterioration. Through my working practice I explore the relationships that these objects have with us as human beings, questioning their value as and within material culture.

Concerned with mapping and replicating the deterioration on selected objects as a means of investigating the patterns of human behaviour. Themes of the ephemeral and a sense of nostalgia run through my work as I explore traces left on objects by people who have since moved on, left or passed away.

Through the replication of deterioration onto other similar found objects I ask the question of what makes something valuable? Does society dictate this value or the individual? An object’s value is dependent on its ‘true nature’ which is determined by its relationship with people. People have personal attachments to objects, objects are ‘dialectal images’ by which we can mediate the course of time through. An object’s value is also dictated by its context within a particular cultural environment, as this changes so does the object’s value.

Therefore an object’s personal value and its cultural value can often be conflicting.

Within my working practice I seek to understand this dialogue between object, person and society.’

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