Reading: A Phantom Limb

Research Essay

A Phantom Limb

Authors:

Abstract

“Phantoms of Form” takes as it’s centre point the idea of the fictional “other” woman. The protagonist is a female figure, that has been devised to enable a distance. She is a ghost, a shadow, She is there but not present. The female form currently exists (but is not limited to) a composite of the architect Eileen Grey (1878-1976), the artist Barbara Hepworth (1903–1975) as well as myself. The life and designs of both women are used in collaboration with my own work, as an auto-fiction. In some essence, the female figure may be seen as a form of fan fiction, an extended imagined version of a real persona and her practice. The project exists as a series of chapters, 1–6, and shape shifts from print to sculptural forms, as well as spoken word. This text is taken from Chapter 6; A Phantom Limb.

  • Year: 2019
  • Volume: 3 Issue: 1
  • Page/Article: 8
  • DOI: 10.5334/mjfar.47
  • Published on 24 Sep 2019
  • Peer Reviewed

Introduction

“Phantoms of Form” is a visual art project, initiated in 2015 and exists, but is not limited to, sculptural forms, printed text, illustration and performance. The project takes as it’s central point the idea of the “other” woman. The protagonist is a female figure, that has been devised to enable a distance. She is a ghost, a shadow, She is there but not present. The female form is currently a composite of the architect Eileen Grey (1878–1976), the artist Barbara Hepworth (1903–1975) as well as the instigator of the project, visual artist Eleanor Duffin (1980–present). The life and designs of both historical women are used in collaboration with Eleanor’s own work, as an auto-fiction. The project adopts some of it’s framework from fan fiction.

“Phantoms of Form” exists as a series of chapters, currently 1–6. Chapter 1, looks at the Parallel between two women and strives for a shared position between both. Chapter 2, seeks to move closer to an understanding of mimicry, mirroring, replication, doubling and repetition as actions for self awareness and gaining autonomy. Chapter 3, observes frustration, when the artist looses an understanding of their work and seeks to regain movement of thought. Chapter 4, is a series of fictive sculptures, never to be realised, for an exhibition which did not happen. Chapter 5, exists as 2 sculptural objects. Below is a fragment from the current chapter, Chapter 6, which is titled a Phantom Limb.

Additional File

The additional file for this article can be found as follows:

Appendix File

A Phantom Limb. DOI: https://doi.org/10.5334/mjfar.47.s1

Competing Interests

The author has no competing interests to declare.

References

  1. Condorelli, C, Wade, G and Langdon, J. 2009. Support structures. Sternberg Press. 

  2. Hepworth, B. 1943–4, cast 1967. The Artist’s Hand, Bronze on wooden base. St Ives, UK: Tate Collection. 

  3. Hepworth, B. 1950–1972. Correspondence with Priaulx Rainier. Tate Archive and Public Records. London, UK: Tate Britan. 

  4. Hepworth, B. 2017. Barbara Hepworth: Writings and Conversations. Tate Publishing. 

  5. Linder. 2013. The Ultimate Form, mixed media performance piece, courtesy of the artist. 

  6. Moth, C. 2016. Travelogue. Liechtenstein: Snoeck Verlagsgesellschaft mbH. 

  7. Rainier, P. 1850–1975. Personal Letters Received from Barbara Hepworth. London, UK: Royal Academy of Music Library. 

  8. Read, J. 1961. Barbara Hepworth. Perivale, UK: BBC Archive. 

  9. Shaw Ashton, D. 1953. Figures in a Landscape. UK: British Film Institute. 

  10. Weizman, E. 2015. Forensic Architecture: Notes from Fields and Forums. Continent, 4(4): 81–87. 

  11. Wolff, C. 1942. The Human Hand. London, UK: Methuen & Co. Ltd. 

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