Joanne Bloch
    4 - 28 August 2020

    I have been a collector all my life. In my early twenties, I became obsessed with the endless array of cheap, mass - produced artefacts that surrounds us - tiny toys from lucky packets, Christmas crackers, key rings and egg machines. I began to collect them, and have never stopped.

    At the heart of my work lies an enduring interest in this world of trashy ephemera. "Thingerotomy" evokes an imaginary surgical procedure that cuts open and lays bare this world, with the intention of both commenting on it, as well as reconfiguring a new, personalised order.

    Collecting and reconfiguring objects is a contradictory act. It's possible to treasure the collected objects for what they are, as well as to see them as emblematic of a wasteful and decadent world. Much of my work is concerned with the excesses inherent to global capitalist culture. I see this work as an ongoing and solution - less interrogation into my own position in the face of this extravaganza of excess, that co-exists so easily with the other side of the global coin - massive deprivation and want.

    At the most basic level, my work expresses a collectors' desire to classify everything in the world (or its miniature plastic version). The obvious impossibility of this task only adds to its fascination.

    I also try to reconsider notions of what we commonly think of as beautiful, precious and worth treasuring. Cheap, mass-produced plastic trinkets and novelties are the only treasures available to the vast numbers of the world's population. My artwork often reflects my own ambivalences about the categories of 'trashy' and 'valuable'.

    Finally, since I have lived all my adult life with significantly impaired vision - I am blind in my right eye-sight means everything to me. Contrary to the currently fashionable disavowal of the visual within the art world, in my work, I celebrate the daily pleasures of sight and seeing.

    After Gauguin - Exotic Other, 2004. pom poms, plastic, pins, lace and braid. 84 X 120 X 6cm
    Deep Blue Sea, 2002. plastic and pins. 47 X 87 X 7.5cm
    Epiphany II (detail), 2003. plastic, ribbons and pins. 109 X 86 X 8cm