window reflection on cabinet displaying paper red rigind hood theatre in pickfords museum derby
04 Oct

We recently moved to a small village in Cornwall where news and gossip travels fast. One of our neighbours passes our house regularly, stopping we are sure to collect any gossip about us that she can share in the local shop. Since she has a zimmer frame and she moves extremely quickly onto the shop after talking to us, so our nick-name for her is ‘hot wheels’.

We also have meaningful conversations with ‘hot wheels’, as although she plugs us for information we manage to change the subject. One day when she was talking about our new home and how we were settling in, she said “home is where you are understood.”

This evening finding time to relax in front of what I call ‘sad telly’ – there was a scene where the main character returns home and sees the old teapot her mother has on the table. She asks why she still has it. Her mother replies “Nothing says home like that old teapot”.

Visiting Derby Museum and Pickford’s Museum this week, I enjoyed some of the objects and the idea that much of this particular display was selected by people from Derby.

text in cabinet at derby museu, 'object that lith our space and bring comfort to places'

Tim Shore’s exhibition throws up stories in contemplating ‘Derby Meantime’. Little Red Riding Hood in the paper theatre display is a story that is never threadbare no matter how it is multiplied, mutilated and retold. We tell stories, write them and change them. There are in everything. We have special relationships with objects and their stories. They often become part of our own.

Objects that we value, keep and have around us. carry significant value. They are not just metaphors or containers of stories but often manifest and mediate our physical and psychological experience through touch, texture, shape, material, and smell. They talk to us, and our relationship with the exterior world, is often molded by our objects. They are part of the landscape of home as much as the stories that we tell and they often intertwine in surprising ways.

REbecca Horn Piano sculpture - upside down with wings with sign saying its resting ie not working

I love the idea that objects have a life of their own and this is evidently an opinion that gallery staff in museums and art galleries seem to be adopting with their signage. In the Tate Modern recently Rebecca Horn’s piano installation had a sign (look closely) saying it was having a rest, and in Derby city Museum the signage excusing the absence of the only Joseph Pickford painting that I enjoyed last week humorously personifies the people in the painting, the building and the weather.

Back in my studio I playing with objects and small figures. Maybe I can bring them to life with stories.

sculpture using jelly mold lace and stoneware ceramic figure

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