Views of Complexity by Bridget Kennedy, May 2020.2020
Acrylic paint on Fabriano paper
150 X 150 cm
This artwork has been made in response to the EU CONCERT Radiation Protection Research Projects and UK NIHR HPRU in Chemical and Radiation Threats and Hazards Medical Radiation Theme final stakeholder dissemination meeting. Due to the Corona virus pandemic the meeting took place via email, so instead of gathering information through personal interactions a set of questions were formulated. The work is a direct response to the participants answers and could not have been created without their co-operation.
I was touched by how generous and thoughtful the responses were and wanted to reflect this in the work. By a process of distillation I fixed on set of 12 – 14 words or short phrases that I felt gave an overview of the responses. These ranged between clinical or scientific terminology through to personal anecdotes and memories, the sentiments behind these words informed my aesthetic decision making process, but are also present in the work too. I knew I wanted to make something that showed the human body interacting with a force or substance that appears to be moving between strength or concentration to dilution or weakness and back again. A circle seemed the most appropriate form to convey this and I chose to make a kaleidoscopic pattern with body outlines in order to convey a sense of interconnection between people and ideas that could intersect with this force. There were several references to china or crockery in the participant responses to questions about heritage and inheritance, which prompted me to chose a colour scheme based around various shades of blue in reference to many familiar forms ceramic decoration (Willow Pattern, Delft Ware etc). Through alternating the modulation of shading between the figures and the circle form the piece creates a sense of ambiguity around the ideas of inside and outside, under and over.