Material was a word I once understood to refer explicitly and exclusively to cloth or fabric, textiles — not yet having learnt anything of the broader context of things and substances to which it also referred.
My naive impression of the word notwithstanding, the invisible greater body of meaning that belonged to material leant it an invisible significance not unlike that implied by the phrase fabric of society where fabric refers to an EVERYTHING of sorts in the same way the material I sewed together invisibly held the same.
Elizabeth Newman has described a longing to see hear or touch what is well and truly missing as a possible motivation for all art making — and as such a solution to an impossible situation — like attempting to materialise something invisible.
Now think of a curtain. A textile or material shorthand for demarcation of a threshold, across which something this wild must occur.
Patching together seemingly unrelated material (cloth and other embedded references) to describe specific and momentary invisible environments that emerge out of reading — books, pictures, rooms, paintings, people, invisible landscapes, unfiltered psychic content, noise, radio waves, signs both real and imagined, etc ad infinitum — the product of a kind of reading that is always happening.
Reading here is a kind of awkward exchange. The simultaneous and seemingly contradictory capacity for opacity and transparency within language, meaning and knowledge make it so. It is an exchange with oneself as well as between oneself and other/s, with the world — the negotiation of images, texts, environments, other bodies — all of which necessitate an awareness and negotiation of boundaries — psychic, spiritual, physical, porous.
The works in this series mark a literal space of my deliberate engagement with this, underlining what is already happening invisibly — but also in ever broader contexts and environments beyond it.
It is happening again (and it will fold time and space).
— Maggie Brink
Maggie’s second solo exhibition with ReadingRoom is scheduled for March, 2021.
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