all works © Lisa Peachey 2015

Here’s a statement I wrote recently:

“My work engages with the point of contact between the personal, the private and the sacred. The work is contemplative in tone, and questions the idea and value of making, through historical and artisan techniques. Central to the work is the solitary journey of the artist, and the desire for a connection with the viewer via an empathetic kindling of the motorneurones when a process or duration is evidenced. Working across all media, there is always an attempt to acknowledge that the images or objects have no intrinsic use, but that they might quietly proffer their own validity through their material value, the manner and duration of their production, or their mimicry of ‘real’ processes. Ultimately each one only reflects a loss - in that they share their means with both ‘real’ and ‘sacred’ things, but like them, they are, at base, mismatched and hollow.

Current influences include the sculpture of Donald Judd and 17th century Spain, the paintings of Hammershøi and Morandi, Michael Craig Martin’s ‘An Oak Tree’, ‘The Tears of Things’ by Peter Schwenger and the Princess and the Pea.”

Here’s another:

“ ‘Ideas are to objects as constellations are to stars.’

Walter Benjamin.

A silent thing. Enjoyed only because it is, and continues to be, there. But what is it for? It has no purpose. It is a remnant of a previous place, where things made meant something, signified something: something shared. When figurines dancing on weary shoulders hushed a city. When god was seen in a block of marble. When things were worth their weight in gold.

It endures. And it is cherished, sometimes. Sentiment, ritual, habit (or market force, for some). Beyond a lifetime, perhaps. Or in a timeless minute of unrecognised care, like being carried by my father in moonlight.

What’s yours is definitely not mine. But you will persist in dusting it. I just hope that it at least ends up at the Salvation Army, instead of being put out with the bins at night.

The object’s tender silence leaves me dumbfounded. Yet from it I gain a sense of identity, and identify with it – despite, or because of, its immutable inaccessibility, its dissolubility, its seemingness only to warm momentarily to my palm. As if in an anechoic chamber, the absence of any murmur of response only focuses and reverberates internal conversations until it appears to whisper volumes, greater than its infinitely empty core.

The works exhibited have one small, domestic thing in common: I made them. They are of me, over time. That is all. They mimic those things that I live with: that sticky brown care of a chair over-varnished and over-polished day after day; the light and shadow of a winter, spent looking for meaning for them in the only place I can – the place where they are. They have a familiar presence. They cannot claim a purpose, or a meaning, except that unspoken and insular lament that objects often conceal – that we chose them and loved them and they couldn’t love us back.”

They sort of say it, but sort of don’t.

Every time, a sifting process occurs, a weighing up of which particular thought has billowed up to become most solid in the particular works I am discussing. And it’s never quite a full precipitation, or at least when it looks like it might be I’m always aware of the potential fall that might instigate, and the albatross it becomes that will weigh the work down.  So I’m thinking about a slightly different meteorological model – the virga. Rainfall that evaporates before hitting the ground – still visible, still present in the mind, but not quite as tangible or solid, not quite as complete. This may be a fatal flaw, only time will tell. (and certainly doesn’t seem to help with press releases..) But without the pressure to produce one all-encompassing thunderous soundbite, things seem a little fresher.

Earlier works were easier – much more say what you see, or do what you say. The latter works are more intuitive. But running through them all are the same ebbing and flowing themes, in one permutation or another; nudged and tangled and spun into various forms. They include blindness and loss; motorneurones and touch; the private and the sacred object; the role of the artist; figure and ground; reverie; gravity; silence.