T6 INTERVIEWS ARTIST LAURA BRANDRETH
Your practice seems to be largely composed of installation and sculpture, is there anything you find particularly appealing about these mediums?
I’m drawn towards installation as a medium for it’s distinctly immersive and flexible qualities. An installation of something implies an experience of that something. By having multiple and various components you can create connections and distances whether that be in the work itself or with the viewer and their interpretations. By calling something an installation it becomes more defined by ideas and feelings then it does by any specific medium or combination of mediums. It has the opportunity to go beyond being an art piece and into something that reflects a collective understanding.
You express an interest in puns, repetition and narrative – how does your work investigate the relationship between visual imagery and language?
I find it interesting that words and pictures can be both literal and figurative. Words can describe an image and an image can evoke words but neither is solely ascribed to the truth or a lie. There is no prejudice either way because people pay attention to all of it. I consider the relationship between visual imagery and language as a bridge to overall communication, what one doesn’t pick up on the other one does. Simultaneously, by creating picture and word match ups you generate a kind of understanding humour, and the humour as an end product is one of the widest nets for communication.
What role does the human body play in your work?
It’s everything, it’s my point of contact with the world. Besides nature it is the similarity that connects strangers. Everything that has ever been accomplished has been in relation to the human body. So in essence it is the universal symbol, the recognition of pain, bliss and everything in between. In my own work, bodies and especially faces are prominent. In the off chance that they are not physically present they are still there subliminally by way of things that are in the image of, are associated with our brand of consciousness, or can affect our own bodies.
Do you have any creative patterns or routines?
Yes, I make list of random things that are usually in no way connected. Anything from clouds, TV remotes, billiard chalk, colloquial expressions, copper piping and alliteration. I suspect that these lists aren’t meant to organize or make sense of what is going on in my head but I am always interested in making things averse to their original function.
Is there an artwork or artistic practice that you recently discovered and found interesting that you could share with the readers?
I find the work of Sandy Skoglund to be one of my more major influences at the moment. She is an American photographer and installation artist who creates staged settings relying on surrealism, repetition, colour and the interaction between people and objects. What I think is particularly interesting about her photographs is how the chaos is composed in a completely organized way.
Lastly, where can readers contact you if they are interested in learning more about your work?
My website: http://lkbrandreth.wix.com/laura-k-brandreth
My email: firstname.lastname@example.org
T6 THANKS LAURA FOR TAKING THE TIME TO ANSWER OUR QUESTIONS!
Laura Brandreth is a recent Bachelor of Fine Arts graduate from McMaster University. This photographic series is a product of her final year in the program.
“The photographic series visually represents a pun, or rather literally translates the title as a word into an ironic narrative. In this series there is an exploration of the versatility of repeated objects in different contexts, and how those objects can become animated through actions that are universally recognizable. Truncate means to shorten by cutting off the top or end and in this case it is presented as a literal removal of the head and feet, leaving behind the ‘trunk’ or torso of the body. This torso having been striped of any definite identity is placed in different situations where the objects it connects with react against it. With these images Language and symbolism work in tandem with each other to the effect of communication, but it is up to the viewer to interpret the motivation of these objects as being either benign or malignant.”