Installations

FRAGMENTS AND WHISPERS- THE WHITE ROOM AND EVELYN JAMES

EXPLORING THE TRACES OF HISTORY LEFT BY PLACE AND PERSON

June 2017, West Dean College

FRAGMENTS AND WHISPERS-

THE WHITE ROOM AND EVELYN JAMES

June 2017, West Dean College

Fragments and Whispers 1

Alison Baxter’s installation created a three dimensional visual animation of Evelyn’s life through small scale vessels, containers and larger scale sight specific work made from thread, fabric and metal.

 

The White Room was Evelyn James’s bedroom from 1892 until 1912. Evelyn was the mother of Edward James, the renowned patron of Surrealist art and founder of West Dean College.

 

The anecdote quoted all the time within the College to describe Evelyn is in context with the central figure of Edward:

 

‘She was heard calling up the main staircase one day ‘Nanny, Nanny, I want one of the children to take to church, and my Nurse replied ‘which one Madam?’ She said ‘the one that goes best with my blue dress.’’

 

This gives a one dimensional portrait of a woman who, as well as being a mother, was an entitled heiress, a prominent society figure, a wife and an accomplished amateur actress. Young women in this stratum of society were valued for their decorative attributes and were often portrayed in a very one-dimensional way with a focus on their external appearance.

 

This installation challenged these perceptions taking inspiration from the different aspects of her life discovered through research in the Edward James Archive.

FRAGMENTS AND WHISPERS-

THE WHITE ROOM AND EVELYN JAMES

June 2017, West Dean College

CAGED, 2017, brass, cotton, linen and rayon thread

STIFF, 2017, five cotton thread vessels, bras, copper and silver bases

SUBSTANCE, 2017, cotton and linen threads, handmade bobbin lace, freshwater pearls, resin hearts

SUBSTANCE, 2017, cotton and linen threads, handmade bobbin lace, freshwater pearls, resin hearts

SUBSTANCE, 2017, cotton and linen threads, handmade bobbin lace, freshwater pearls, resin hearts

SUBSTANCE, 2017, detail

CONTAINED, 2017, paper twine, cotton thread and rose gold plated copper

CONTAINED, 2017, paper twine, cotton thread and rose gold plated copper

CONTAINED, 2017, paper twine, cotton thread and rose gold plated copper, detail

CONTAINED, 2017, paper twine, cotton thread and rose gold plated copper, detail

CONTAINED, 2017, paper twine, cotton thread and rose gold plated copper, detail

BUTTONED UP, 2016, cotton thread and graphite

READY, 2016, cotton thread 

Fragments and Whispers 2

FRAGMENTS AND WHISPERS-

THE WHITE ROOM AND EVELYN JAMES

August/September 2017, UCA, Farnham

FRAGMENTS AND WHISPERS- THE WHITE ROOM AND EVELYN JAMES, CAGED, cotton, linen and rayon thread and brass 

August/September 2017, UCA, Farnham

© 2017 Alison Baxter. 

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