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It started as a compulsion, obsession, purification, relapse, ritual, silence. What it resulted in, was me giving myself license to indulge in all of my vices.

My final collection is heavily informed by a personal experience of obsessive behavioural routines in the context of Hypomanic psychological states. My methodology references a specific model of Expressionism, using aspects of that creative approach as a means of addressing real-time experience which examined a period of relapse in compulsive behaviours. The minimalist, linear work seeks to address a long-term relationship between myself and an NSSI compulsion. Here the surface presents an opportunity to challenge established behavioural patterns and readdress the compulsion, taking it out of the context of fear and re-placing it within a more constructive environment.

Situating itself historically within minimalist practice, the collection places and emphasis on material purity, using only lead to create simplified yet fragile marks on the raw grain of the paper. The monochromatic aesthetic seeks to promote peace, while lightly examining the balance of space and information. Relying on the simple use of Graphite renounces the traditional concern for form and matter, instead engaging with contemporary spiritualism. This aesthetic involves a removal of emphasis from the creative identity through a focus on mechanical outcomes, beyond this it represents a detachment from emotional engagement, allowing for an objective routine of automatic mark making.

As the collection progressed the methodology became a detailed ritual of obsession: the pencil was sharpened, the ruler was cleaned before and after every mark was made. This routine echoed the dynamics of the compulsive cycle: the obsessive thoughts trigger anxiety, leading to action, providing a relief which is only temporary; causing repetition. Visualising this process allowed a sense of release and a temporary relief from the Hypomanic psychological environments which encourage the compulsion, allowing access to an inner sense of tranquility and a secure setting which allowed for a greater sense of structure to be established.

Readings of the work can be multifarious and beyond that of its physical materiality, holding the potential to being the viewer to the edge of a transcendental experience. The significance of the empty surface lies in discarding traditional reading agreements; instead, focusing on inner tranquillity – silence.