This is where the exercises and the mini series combine further.
After doing the back-drawing on to the blouse I had another go using the 3d printer pen, writing out and insult then placing it on to the gelliplate to take the first and ghost print – on to paper and on-to the blouse. Looking at the effect I decided to layer on the actual 3d printing too. This blouse now has all stages of printing and layering – yet it still felt incomplete, so I worked further.
I am pleased with the different layers of text, the back-printing that I wrote by hand, the shadow print of the 3d printed insult, and the 3d printed text. Using the 3d printer I can make writing for the stencil of ex 4 and can choose whether to have the text mirrored or normal on the gelliplate.
This piece builds from the babygro sample as it was a threat I received, an insult that still haunts me and I need to spit it out of me. These wounded prints give me a safe platform to do this. It doesn’t need to be decodable by the ‘reader’, but the many layers of its imprinting damage are inferred.
Using dissolvable fabric I was able to stabilise the layers and embroider using the machine with the thicker bobbin thread on the bottom, but once the stitching was done and the material dissolved this became the upper surface. The stitching enabled me to hold the binding in place, the bandage at the angle I wished and then I could layer one more ‘bleed’ print to the surface. This time I left the sample to dry and it bled through onto the reverse of the garment.
For some strange reason this moved me more than all the rest of the surfaces I have created.
Again, I deliberated for some time over the title of this piece. Did I use the insult? Did I find another saying? How could I convey the ambiguity of viewpoint? How could I convey the effect of gaslighting and the denial of injury by others. I settled on another common phrase of those times – something that is impossible to prove and disprove and over which I am still stunned at its efficiency in quashing the truth:
“You’re imagining things…she’s just attention seeking.”
I hope the image and the title create the confusion and impact of being injured and denied, hurt and disbelieved. I hope it also acknowledges what it probably on the lips of many critics – the self-serving therapy of this art, this work, ‘the attention seeking’; but then immediately throws you with the realisation that this is how abuse and bullying work: denial and diminishment.
Let me know – I’d really appreciate your reading of this piece in the same way that many have helped move this printing part on with the forum critique.
Tell me what this piece does – straight and without gentleness works best I find for me. Thank you.