I’ve been given access to your mind, thoughts, fears, hopes, guilty secrets and blush-worthy dreams… By using art to become a vehicle for messages to your future selves, the barriers of the everyday were lifted:
I wanted to give you, the audience, the chance to participate in a highly personal artwork. And the results were better than I ever expected. You have been mailing me your letters and messages to be included in a time capsule. The artwork which serves as the time capsule took shape in direct response to the letters. (see the other Write Back blog posts here)
The letters were so open, honest and truthful – allowing a really human, intimate look inside your minds – that I was compelled to create an artwork which reflected this. I wanted to make a safe, precious place to hold these intimate and personal messages, but I also wanted to convey the tremendous openness and transparency of the letters and the writers. So the sculpture which was unveiled at London’s Debut Contemporary Gallery illustrated this dichotomy in the form of boxes. I sculpted memento boxes and keepsake
chests out of glass, complete with hinges, locks & handles, for your letters to nestle in. Of those who allowed me to use fragments of their letters publicly, I took the text and handwriting and embedded this on multiple layers within the glass, creating areas of dense, illegible text, and others where fragments of the messages were revealed.
So what happened next? During a ritual enacted at the event by performance artist Tracey McGarrigan (adorned with one of my sculptures), the envelopes were all sealed with a wax seal bearing the letters WB (Write Back), and placed inside the time capsule. In three years time, 2014, a piece of the artwork & your message will be mailed back to you.