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Molly Erin
Phlaccidities

elasticated cotton, cotton thread, red lentils
11.5″ x 4.25″

@mollyerinart
United Kingdom

Casey Roonan, Comics Artist & Cartoonist

Casey Roonan
Teaching Assistant
Illustrator & Comics Artist

Artist Statement
“Currently, my practice is focused on investigating the philosophical theory of abject. Abject is defined as something that does not adhere to rules or borders; which disrupts identity and systems. Essentially it is an ambiguous place that exists in-between how we define the boundaries of the real, where the divisions between subject/object, animal/human, and life/death break down.

I aim to use soft sculpture to create biomorphic forms that linger on this border. Suggestive in both their shape and the malleable nature of the material, I want to position the viewer to question whether what they are viewing is organic or synthetic, and highlight the paradoxical struggle between fascination and disgust the abject often presents us with.

As depicted in these photographs, by placing my sculpture within a real world context and juxtaposing the abstract form with a rigid, recognisable environment I aim to convey a sense of foreboding as the unsure creeps into the certain.

Presently I am studying a Foundation Diploma in Art and Design at Plymouth College of Art prior to beginning a BA in Fine Art at Plymouth University. I am interested in creating conceptual pieces that experiment with form across a wide range of mediums including sculpture, photography and drawing. Additionally, my background in textiles has lead me to often work with fabric, thus situating my work within the sphere of feminist art.”

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3 responses on "Molly Erin"

  1. Molly, this is such a strong body of work, in regards to both, its conceptual and technical strengths. My initial reaction was a sense of unease; the photographs are definitely playful, but the more I look at them, they become unsettling. And I love the tension that this contradiction presents because I am so curious about the possible narratives behind this. Looking at the photographs, the viewer becomes an active participant of the world that you have created.

    I think this is largely because of the interactions that you have forged between the organic form and, the rigid and industrial structures. Reading your artist statement, what I find so successful about this piece is the manner in which the strong craftsmanship has been supported by a very well thought out intent. The naturalism and pink fleshiness is so beautifully striking against these grey environments. You have effectively personified this form and I really like how in each photograph it seems to be interacting with the objects differently. They seem to have mushroomed out of nothingness and it provides both repulsion and intrigue. It gives it so much character despite its minimalism and I would love to see more explorations of it as you move forward with this series.

    I see that you are starting to play with scale and I feel you can push that even further by exercising its use more. Your photography are strong and you have have a very good sense of composition. I really find that being applied in the third photograph where the form is seeping out of the pipe; the tiny amount of the trees that are being shown provides the illusion that the form is huge in comparison. It has a presence thats really impactful.

    Your work reminded me of an anthology that I recently got introduced to in a magical realism class at college. It is written by Shelley Jackson and titled The Melancholy of Anatomy. In it the human body is explored inside out, and each body form or organ becomes a character and a narrative of and about itself. It is a fascinating piece of writing, which is strange but beautiful and at times disturbing. Its about the human body but yet almost otherworldly and peculiar. And I think thats the quality I see in your work, which I find so intriguing and exciting! Awesome work, keep at it!

  2. Hi Molly!

    I really enjoy the immediate playfulness of the form you’ve created which can be attributed to the excellent craftsmanship and choice of setting for your photographs. I wonder whether this soft sculpture is alive or not since the pink fleshiness of the fabric calls to mind actual flesh yet there are no other forms that bring it further. That minimalist ambiguity starts to characterize the form as both disturbing and intriguing as you wonder how it got there and why, slowly bringing in a sense of uncertainty the longer you look at it.

    Your artist statement is is written with quality and care, and I would say that your aims of creating biomorphic forms that linger on the borders of life/death, animal/human and subject/object are successful.

    I’m happy that through the use of textiles you’re viewing your work as feminist, as that brings forth the conversation of how the patriarchy affects any female or femme person. I think the method of photographing the soft sculpture in juxtaposing man-made environments is effective and I wonder, if through setting and composition you can bring forth an abject relation to the patriarchy as well.

    Overall I think this piece has a lot of character and is executed in a well thought and conceptualized manner. I would love to see an extended series of this and maybe more varied soft sculptures as well! This has a lot of potential to tell stories and make statements through composition and relation to setting.

  3. Wow Molly, awesome work!!

    I am loving the juxtaposition between organic shape and the metallic geometry of the environment. You did an excellent job creating a fake naturalism within the object, which is embodied in its amorphous shape as well as its fleshy color. I appreciate the man-made metal environments you found for your photographs because they sit against this pink very nicely and enhance the deliberate contrast between the opposing elements in your work.

    In addition to being visually striking, this piece is conceptually intriguing as well! Your artist statement is well articulated and very thoughtful.

    Moving forward, I would love to see you play with the scale of the organic object in relation to the entire photograph. Zooming out and/or in could be an interesting way of continuing to blur the lines between organic and inorganic, uncertain and certain, just as you describe in your artist statement.

    I am itching to see more of the environment, and zooming out could potentially force the viewer to search for this mysterious fleshy object you have placed within the location. Or, zooming in could make different aspects of the photo even less recognizable and push your concept forward as well. You have such a good eye for composition already, so I think you would have no problem successfully exploring either one of these avenues!

    Overall, awesome job and keep up the good work!

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