I am presenting three artworks at the exhibition “Have you met my sister” in Port Pirie, Australia (2019). The works were influenced by the strong fellowship and dialogue with my artist colleagues and friends. We live apart in different cities and countries but our conversation goes on. The conversation is a safe, incorporeal space where I can reflect my thoughts and ideas. Identity, family, roots, bonds and roles have been strong topics.
One of the presented works is my installation “I miss you so much”. I am privileged to have lived most of my life in the presence of my four grandparents. In my eyes they were always very old, but still lived for years and years on until I myself was almost middle aged. My grandmother was the last one of them to die three years ago at the age of 99.
The art work expresses the preciousness of fleeting moments, my feeling of loss, sorrow and the fading and “discoloration” of memory. At numerous times I had coffee with my grandparents at their own homes and later at elderly homes. Those rendezvous usually followed a similar pattern and having coffee, treats or sharing a meal were almost like a ritual. Therefor this specific scene is a relevant part of my memories. For some reason I was always interested in tableware and objects (also studied ceramics and glass design). II always took notion on their cups, plates and table settings. To me the settings and habits were a representation of the differing identities of all them four – of their backgrounds and family cultures besides representation of era and social class.
The objects of the installation are not replicas of actual dishes. Despite the fading accuracy of details in memories, a sense of my grandparents’ personas, feeling of their presence and the atmosphere of our shared moments remain in my mind.
By Laura Pokela (2019)