Time Lines – the transience of being.

These works are based on natural felted wool underlay from a 16th Century house in Canterbury. Over the years the dust under the floorboards has risen and infused itself into the fabric of the wool, thereby capturing the passage of time.

Not only do the lines create beautiful compositions, reminiscent of the paintings of Mondrian, they also physically contain a history of the house and its inhabitants – given the make up of dust, quite literally. With these works I am trying to suggest the subtlest realms of existence, beyond what our ordinary senses can perceive.

I have created the felt works by selecting a composition from the lines and the spaces. I have used my inspiration from this to create the ink and water drawings, allowing the ink and water to leave its own trace.

There are several precedents for the use of dust in a work of art, including the famous collaboration between Marcel Duchamp and Man Ray, Dust Breeding, 1920 (a photograph by Man Ray of Duchamp’s The Large Glass after it had collected a year’s worth of dust while Duchamp was in New York). More recently Serena Korda actually requested donations of dust which she made into bricks for a work entitled Laid to Rest, a special commission for an exhibition called Dirt: the filthy reality of everyday life, hosted by the Wellcome Collection in 2011.

Dust is part of the fabric of our everyday lives and these works represent the traces we leave of ourselves on the journey from “……….dust to dust”.

Julie Cuthbert

Comments from recent exhibition

‘The works induce a feeling of calmness and serenity.’

‘They have a sense of being more than what they physically are.’