NOTES FROM A CONVERSATION WITH PATRICIA DAUDER
On the title and the idea: Hollow
The word “hollow”, has a slightly different meaning from “empty”. I have chosen to use this word because it takes me to the idea of an unfilled body, a sort of shell with no substance, to find a precise image. I associate “hollow” to a lack of contact with the natural context, to a lack of tactile culture, and with the lack of memory of the so called “modern” societies that we inhabit. These are some of the ideas that I have thought about after a short stay in Ecuador, on the occasion of my participation at the XIV Bienal de Cuenca (2018). I could see, in that country, that man keeps a more direct relationship both with the biodiversity around him and with the ancestral, artisanal cultures. The works in the exhibition, despite their formal differences, have in common that they appear as skins, layers, surfaces, o fragments of a body or a structure which is not there, either absent or residual. Hollow would be then this reference to a feeling of vacuity, but not in terms of space or architecture, but in an almost existential way.
Hollow and Formes Absents (Absent Forms)
In my earlier exhibition at ProjecteSD, Formes Absents (2015-2016) there was clearly a reference to the notion of “emptyness” or to some fragmented forms, but more from a phenomenological point of view, given that most of the works in the show were the result of alterations produced by external environmental agents. The works that make Hollow, are produced in my studio, which does not mean that my interests have changed, but it is not always necessary to use similar processes to deal with similar subjects. Actually, in both exhibitions, my interest for knowledge systems and ancestral cultures are there, a s well as my idea to use symbols and intuition as tools to comprehend, interpret and represent our surroundings.
References to places, sites, experiences
A particular work of mine can be the result of many situations, experiences, reflections or even the result of having travelled or spent time in another place, city. However it is, nothing in Hollow, is explicitly a direct reference or evocation of any particular place, There are a couple of works, though, Finning and the series entitled Canopy, that come from my brief time in Ecuador, in the sense that they have been produced from elements collected after my month there. One of the ideas that I had in mind while in Cuenca (Ecuador), was the geographical proximity to the amazon jungle that I never visited. I think that places, geographies, or travels behave, often, as triggers to an idea that was already in my mind but that, either because of a daily routine or because of a lack of attention, did not end in being formatted. Quite often the impact of a place materializes “a posteiori” in my work, much later.
Working or using sculpture in my work is not much different than using other media. At times, when I am drawing or painting, I have the feeling that, in reality, I am sculpting. It is strange, but on some occasions I think I am removing matter from a drawing or a painting, like if I was emptying a piece of wood or stone. On the other hand, if we observe some of the objectual works in the show, we will see that they are composed of parts that are not much thicker than a sheet of paper, made of very fine layers of clay or wood. After all, they are all strata, wrappings o coverings, which may contain in some cases, some sort of information.
In Hollow, everything is tactile, organic, animal or human, yet despite its formal differences, all works seem to accord to one tonality, a common direction, so that once together, independently of their autonomous significance, become an environmental ensemble, a sort of scene, or part of a story.