Domus Habitus Series (2009)

Research Table and Fossil Room (Domus habitus series) 2009, found objects, perspex, glass, light, timber
(installation view detail). Image courtesy of the artist.

In my work Domus Habitus: Collections from the domestic landscape, I explore the 19th century fascination with capturing, collecting and displaying the natural world in a quasi-ecological display. Reflecting on the importance of our aquatic ecosystems, I have created a domestic ecosystem in order to draw parallels between home and aquatic environments.

The works were created using domestic objects, and include pegs, button, sewing equipment and kitchenware.  From these often perceived banal objects, I created organic forms which reflect my interest and concern for the environment. I used these forms to create installations which reflect living ecosystems, both natural and human-made. Through these installations I explore the everyday, reflecting on the choices we make in the home: which of course are intrinsically linked with the environment.

 Orcus maximus, 2009, found objects, timber, rope, steel
(Installation view Ipswich Community Gallery, Changing Perceptions Exhibition, July 2010). Photo credit: LeAnne Vincent

 Research Site, 2010, found objects, wire, glue, timber
(Installation view SWICH Contemporary Art Space). Image courtesy of the artist.

Ornamentum Effeminatus

Ornamentum effeminatus, 2009 (detail view). Image courtesy of the artist.

Ornamentus effeminatus, 2009,  found objects, timber, perspex.
(installation view at Toowoomba Regional Gallery, Future Nurture Exhibition). Image courtesy of the artist.
Ornamentum effeminatus, 2009 (Detail). Image courtesy of the artist.
In the work Ornamentum effeminatus I created an installation which explores our interactions and impact on the world’s ecosystem: in particular exploring the symbiotic connection between domestic and ocean environments.

The resulting “domestic ecosystem” is displayed in the context of a 19th century museum, including period display plinth and quasi-didactic panel. This aesthetic reflects the 19th century fascination with capturing, collecting and displaying the natural world: a fascination generated in response to a rapidly changing world due to the emergence of industrialisation. This aesthetic is intrinsic to the underlying theme of the work; allowing the viewer to reflect on human interactions with the natural world both past and present simultaneously.

By drawing parallels between the ‘home’ and the natural world I aim to evoke curiosity, inviting the viewer to explore this quasi-ecosystem stimulating interest and reflection: pondering the question are we nurturing or neglecting our environment?

Material Choice
The domestic objects used in this installation include pegs, buttons, beads, Tupperware, sponges, pins, measuring cups and microwave containers. The material choice is essential to the work, with the domestic objects evoking a sense of the everyday. 

Using these often perceived banal objects from the home I have created a “domestic ecosystem” full of life, colour and imagination. This coral like formation speaks of both beauty and fragility, with the material choice reflecting on daily domestic tasks such as cooking, washing and cleaning.

These daily tasks involve choices, choices which have the potential to damage our beautiful aquatic environments. Residue from cleaning products, agricultural fertilisers and pollutants ultimately end up in our waterways which in turn feed into our oceans. By evoking a sense of the everyday, the viewer is challenged to reflect on the daily choices made within the home: which of course are intrinsically linked with the environment.

Image courtesy of the artist.
Above are works exhibited at Transforming Spaces, SWICH Contemporary Art Space, 2009. These are a series of explorations from my quasi-scientific installation Domus Habitus: exploring the micro world of the domus kingdom......