Illuminated Lives
screenprints on zerkall paper, wooden dressing screen with projected stop motion animation developed using hinged, silhouette, paper cut-out figures

Illuminated Lives
screenprints on zerkall paper, wooden dressing screen with projected stop motion animation developed using hinged, silhouette, paper cut-out figures

Illuminated Lives
screenprints on zerkall paper, wooden dressing screen with projected stop motion animation developed using hinged, silhouette, paper cut-out figures

Artist's Statement

The screen-printed and animated dressing screen that I have made was inspired by the people who lived and worked in Preston Manor and all the details around the house that make it so personal. The servants, working in the background, must have been very much part of the wallpaper of the house and I wanted to use the objects you see (jelly moulds, crockery, cleaning apparatus) and imagine it all alive again.

Initially I planned to make an animated wallpaper but the dressing screen came about because I liked the idea of projecting animation onto an object rather than a flat wall. I wanted to explore combining animation with printmaking and as I use cut-paper silhouettes in my work, I created hinged silhouette puppets that I could animate, focusing on their daily repetitive tasks. The mischievous elements came about as I spent hours moving them fractions of millimetres while using stop-motion to animate. I felt bored for them so I decided to give them more interesting things to do … stealing a strawberry, trying the soup, kissing the pig’s head on a platter, maids pulling out tongues… not all of these have made it onto the screen.

Walking into the bedroom, there are nine Edwardian servants carving, plucking, stirring, sweeping, standing, relaxing, carrying, vacuuming – all busying away in an uncanny and ghostly manner.