“This is where we meet”
An exhibition of paintings, KZNSA gallery, Durban, May 2006
There is something unique about a meeting place, a “metaxy”, where personal boundaries coalesce and open up an offering for interaction and discovery. This exhibition explores the “in between space” or intermediate region where we meet. I have used paint, canvas and paper.
The transformation of raw material into cloth and its transformation into clothing, (leather, silk, appliqué, weaving, ikat) all carry a tiny content of the people engaged in their creation and the people who wear them. They suggest another time and place, other lives lived, a reality carried by their patterns, textures and colours. They beckon one into an intermediate space.
I hope to create such a space between the images I have made and the viewer. The pieces on this exhibition are reminiscent of cloth and clothing and the illusions they evoke honour the between place. They too demand a place of encounter, a meeting place.
Such an interactive realm may also be felt when a table cloth is laid out as a setting for people to meet. You see it as the light plays on water, filters between leaves, as you swing in the air or ride a horse through the grass. I feel that space when I am in a concert hall waiting for the sounds that link us, one to another. This has a kindling effect, drawing one in and creating attention and anticipation but allowing you to be completely alone at the same time.
The clothes in this exhibition have been worn and loved. Their body and surface engender memories through images and feelings. Their colour and texture add to a sense of location by their weight and presence.
This is a continuation in my search to make the “between” place a visual reality that carries with it both immediacy and continuity.
In previous work I have reflected on this space from different view points. The “breathe” series used the image and idea of the sound and flow of life and the living between you and me. The “jetty” series created connections between water and land, a place for boats that are going out and returning home. “Stoep”, a series which carries a myriad of associations in the South African context where people meet, hang out or polish their stories rhythmically into the surface. In all cultures there is a place between the privacy of the home and the vastness of the outside world, where visitors are welcomed, where outside and inside are woven together in new beginnings. In another series I used doors. The series “inside/outside” is the visual experience of transparency where the luminosity of the object is experienced in itself, a kind of awe in the light where luminosity and numinosity go together. “Soft voices” is a series of small drawings in the shape of airmail letters and the “music” series plays with sound and image as the connecting principles.
In addressing these spaces I look for that place of greeting where events or incidents or transactions have happened and where time stands still full of the memories of meetings.
Jill Trappler, 2006