Indepth Arts News: |
"Trish Morrissey: Seven Years"
2005-11-14 until 2005-12-16
University of Essex Art Gallery
UK United Kingdom
An exhibition of work by Trish Morrissey opens to the public at University of Essex’s Art Gallery, Colchester. The exhibition includes photographs and video work created over a two-year period and is inspired by family photo albums and family relationships. The works question and parody our understanding of family photography through staged photographs.
In a series of elaborately constructed portraits, Morrissey worked closely with her elder sister to impersonate family members (both real and imagined) and re-enact memories familiar to all of us - childhood birthdays or holidays at the seaside. The resulting series of large-scale colour photographs is titled Seven Years, referring to the age gap between Morrissey and her sister. She made the images at her former family home in Dublin, using old clothes found in her parents’ attic or searching second hand shops for the perfect prop, to meticulously recreate the atmosphere of the seventies and eighties. In contrast to most family photos, the people in her images rarely smile, allowing the viewer to concentrate on the gestures and body language which reveal hidden tensions between family members.
Accompanying the photographs are two new video works. In the bittersweet Eighteen and Forty Five, two women wearing a wedding dress (whose faces we never see) dance in the harsh surroundings of a suburban back yard, whilst Eleven and Three Quarters shows a small boy chasing an elusive rabbit round a garden.
Trish Morrissey (born in Dublin, 1967, lives and works in London) has exhibited extensively in the UK including at the National Portrait Gallery, London as part of the prestigious John Kobal Portrait Award. She has shown internationally in group-shows in Vienna, Sao Paulo, New York and Paris amongst others.
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