GLASS TERMINALS, 2019
Reliquaries have a paradoxical role of containment and transcendence. The relic in the reliquary is not only elevated from terrestrial to extra-celestial by the frame itself but is protected and treasured within an enclosed environment. Reliquaries are complex and layered objects, their existence necessitates their surface’s to be both permeable and impermeable, visible and invisible as well as discrete whilst describing the significance and value of an artifact. Within this project Glass Terminals, the role of the reliquary is reimaged through contemporary processes and materials.
Throughout history, we can track the shifting role of a reliquary; initially, reliquaries were designed to conceal; creating a divide between the sacred and the mortal. Often it would be solely the depictions carved into the reliquary that would describe the significance of the item without revealing its form; exercising the imagination and faith of a pilgrim. Often this concealment was due to the imminent decay of these materials as they were often from natural porous origins, such as bones, hair and human nails, but often dust, rock, and mud.
Within this series, the notion of the reliquary is distorted and reimagined permeable and impermeable contemporary surfaces become the focus of the material investigations. Glass, stands and netting are staged in enclosed environments that glow and warp with a digital luminosity to elevate them from their domestic properties. The promise of transcendence is replaced by the back glow of the digital screen. The artifacts refer to the traditional body parts and debris whilst being non-porous and far removed from a relic's organic origin. This project culminates in a series of objects or surfaces presented for the spectator to see as well as see-through as a way of blurring the line between relic and reliquary and by extension artifact and display.