Under Tower Pier (2010-11)

Under Tower Pier came about as a result of my seeking out a place that seemed to articulate certain emotions and experiences that I needed to explore.  These included risk, instability and marginality.

The place was in a tidal zone and was completely submerged by water twice daily. It was also somehow beneath the city; invisible, out of sight, in its own reality.   It encompassed the idea of a hidden history and of phantoms, real or imagined, as well as presenting an architecture that from certain angles presented a thicket, a jungle of random, jostling and chaotic forms but seen from other angles presented a rationally ordered space, the visual equivalent of a psychological ‘moment of clarity’.

It became like a personal laboratory for me to access repressed memories to do with having a parent with a mental illness, to do with the consequences of being denied knowledge, and to do with the compensatory mechanisms that can result – the temptation to take refuge in a world of fantasy in order to avoid truth or reality.

The objects that I found under the Pier represented both the possibility of transformation and in their formal aspect were like hieroglyphs, the intriguing and exciting signs of an inaccessible – or alien – language.