SELF SOOTHERS by Sibyl Montague explores our need for intimacy, care and nurturing; the places that we find solace; and our complex relationship with commodity culture and fast fashion. Gathering materials and items from our everyday; food, clothes, rags, blankets, wool and cut ups combine to create ‘soft’ textile-based works.
Snakes hang from the ceiling disconnected from their source and in a fast fashion skin. The snake, as a Celtic symbol for rebirth, healing, and wisdom, was understood to came from inside of the earth, holding the world’s secrets and wisdom, an earth healer. In time the snake became a Christian symbol for the devil and paganism, often depicted under the foot of the Virgin Mary.
Other elements of this exhibition combine and gesture towards the types of care, sustenance and measures for survival that are needed now and for the future. Bundles of textiles become vulnerable parcels of energy and embodied carbon.
Foregrounding the domestic and the gendered crafts of sewing, wrapping, weaving, quilting and needlework Montagues work takes form through acts that are synonymous with caregiving and the politics of care.
About the Artist:
Sibyl Montague is an Artist in Residence at VISUAL for 2020.
Her practice includes sculpture, video and installation. A graduate of Chelsea College of Art and Design, London, Montague was recently awarded the IMMA 1000 residency at the Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin (2019) and laureate of the Institut Francais Residency Programme at the Cité Internationale des Arts, Paris, France (2017). Additional awards include Emerging Visual Artist Award, Wexford Arts Centre (2012) and Oriel Davies Open, Wales (2011). Recent presentations include Display, Link, & Cure, Complex, Dublin (2019); Practice curated by Alice Butler, New Spaces, Derry; Saplings, Pallas Projects, Dublin; My Fears of Tomorrow are Melting Away, Cité Internationale des Arts, Paris. Her moving image work was commissioned for the collection of the Museum of Old and New Art (MONA) in Tasmania.