This Was House

Here’s one of the pieces I’ve done recently, and plan to screen print soon. There’s a bunch of houses near levenshulme station that have been threatened with demolition for months and months now, and have finally been knocked down to make way for new development. The local residents were protesting for some reason, probably because they think traffic will increase or something.

Anyway, the houses came down, and it was pretty amazing to see a couple of houses reduced to rubble. The demolition company just knocked them down with loads of old furniture still in there, so this massive pile of debris had chairs, tables, an armchair or two, an upright piano, picture frames and many other weird broken  shapes. Kinda reminded me of Michael Landy’s project a few years ago called Break Down, in which he destroyed all his life possessions, except this is just an every- day kind of identity erasure, executed from without rather than from within.

It definitely made me think about the relative fragility of the houses we live in, which seem such safe refuges, especially at this time of the year. The other houses around seemed to watch warily with lit windows, perhaps angry, full of contempt, or maybe fearful to see one of their kind reduced to dust; the dust of the earth and of the stars that wink knowingly above; the dust of us all.

This time of year definitely draws me towards dusk – whilst summer light brings contrast, texture and vivid colour, winter light is fleeting, and seems always to be retreating away, hidden, just colouring the sky enough to bring out looming silhouettes peopled by hard glints of metal or frost.

Currently listening to: Tord Gustavsen Trio – Being There

Click on the picture below to see the full image

This Was House, Nov 2009


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