Incomplete sublimation cube
(when we built our first fire)


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all works © Lisa Peachey 2015

Glass cube etched, with mirror glass, wood and charcoal.

160cm x 160cm x 170cm

‘Distilling is beautiful. First of all, because it is a slow, philosophic, and silent occupation, which keeps you busy but gives you time to think of other things, somewhat like riding a bike. Then, because it involves a metamorphosis from liquid to vapour (invisible), and from this once again to liquid; but in this double journey. Up and down, purity is attained, an ambiguous and fascinating condition, which starts with chemistry and goes very far. And finally, when you set about distilling, you acquire the consciousness of repeating a ritual consecrated by the centuries...’

Primo Levi, The Periodic Table.

In 2007 Ellie Reid and Lisa Peachey were given the opportunity to curate an exhibition in a space underneath a shopping centre in Bloomsbury, London. The space was large, commercial and harsh. Looking at the role of artistic creation as a personal and introverted act, it was clear that a smaller, more intimate space was needed – and so it was built.

A glass cube the artist’s fathom width and height, floating on a mirrored bottom. Throughout the duration of the exhibition, the inner surface of the glass was etched for up to 10 hours a day, to slowly become a white cube for and as the sole act of creation. Inspired in a way by the notion of insitutional critique, but also by the mythology of the artist as a kind of alchemist/magician – disappearing into the cooling chamber.