As a Queer Non-Binary sculptor, my research explores the commons, medieval
ecology, and grief. I’m estranged and have experienced ongoing homelessness
since the age of 14. As such, my lived experience informs my practice by
utilising immersive installation, as a form to reclaim space otherwise made
unavailable to me as a marginalised individual.

Through engaging with foraged natural materials in ‘traditional’ methods; I
develop embodied, tactile narratives that encourage alternative readings of
our current moment. My work seeks to employ new media approaches in moving
image and sound in order to synthesize historical processes with
contemporary aesthetics. In attempts to re-contextualise and render visible
labour, I subvert the notion of the Acheiropoietic object (objects not made
by human hands). Situating complex installations in the landscape draws
attention to the absurdity of an object’s presence by questioning the
invisibility of its labour. The sculptures and sound works that feature are
informed from research focussed on the mythologization and representation of
the landscape in visual culture – specifically, peatland, marshland and
forestry. I am interested in how these sites both materially and
conceptually, are subject to forms of industrial and cultural extraction

Contextualising work through installation in these sites acknowledges
the landscape as place of common good that traverses temporal barriers
to address the past, present and future, as well as the political and
the personal.

Much of my work explores the impacts of displacement and the
liminality of queerness paralleled through visual metaphor and natural
phenomena. Using research into local histories / heritage to re-root
myself in a place and community between Glasgow and Edinburgh has been
so impactful for me as someone that has had to move around countless
times and has felt rootless physically and emotionally.
I feel my work is an offering to others with experiences of
displacement and alienation, that I hope allows them a sense of
permission to reconnect with community and the landscape – to move on
from the fear of being uprooted.

My practice uses the materiality of clay to communicate complex ideas
emerging from this experiential knowledge to challenge the viewer
physically and conceptually in an accessible visual language.
Sculpting with unfired ceramics to create malleable installations
questions the ‘formalities of a material’ and is suggestive of a ‘queer
time’ or dimension. My recent work as well as the work I hope to develop in the future explores and represents this rejection of the binary in material states and embraces fluidity.

Statement Draft

My Beak was close fettered,
the currents of ocean,
running cold beneath me.

There I grew in the sea, my body close to the moving wood.
I was all alive
when i came back from the water
clad all in black,
but a part of me white.

When living
the air lifted me up,
the wind from the wave bore me afar -
up over the seals bath.

Tell me my name.

It is known that in Scotland there was once a tree growing on the bank of a river which produced fruits shaped like ducks.
When these were nearly ripe, they dropped down of their own accord,
some onto the earth, and some into the water.
Those that landed on the earth rotted away,
but those that sank into the water
instantly came to life, swam up from below the marshy roots,
and immediately flew into the air, equipped with feathers and wings.

On one occasion I have seen them with my own eyes on the coast of Cove Sea, when a piece of wrangled drift wood washed upon the shore, dancing between the seaweed and my unsuspecting ankles.
There they were, more than a thousand of these tiny little bodies, hanging from a piece of wood on the sea-shore, their gum like forms enclosed in their shells. The shiny nacre a pearly placenta protruding from the burly fir-wood.
I pried open a few of the clam-like shells and peered inside. They were clinging by their beaks, like tiny anchors embedded in the grain. Holding them up to sunlight, their pink translucent bodies glowed, i could see through thin moist feathers all the way to their bleating heart.
Their wings dressed in wispy black feathers were sodden, tucked in against their fragile frame and looked much too premature for flight.
As they pulsed and wriggled like a disgruntled baby sleeping, feeling like a guilty mother I closed the shells back up, swaddled the driftwood in a clump of seaweed and set the strange ark adrift in the water again.
I waded in the cooling tide until the sleeping nursery was just a speck floating on the horizon before I turned to the journey home.
I may never know which of those strange beings sank further into the rotting waters or flew off into the freedom of air. When I revisited the town nearly a decade later I eagerly investigated the matter - asking the townsfolk if anyone knew the fate of the barnacle geese,
and it was then that I learned that miracles always recede further and further into the distance.

Short Story
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