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Christalena Hughmanick: string figures for(e)casting


fimmtudagur, 20. júní 2024

Christalena Hughmanick: string figures for(e)casting

Opening on Thursday 28th of June from 5 to 7 p.m. at Galleria Gjutars in Vantaa, Finland.

This exhibition looks at knot tying practices that have been used for magic, play and physical
healing. The child’s game of making string figures on the hands was used both to predict the
future and cast spells in ancient folk traditions. Also found in the field of medicine, the earliest
known account of a string figure is found in the 100 AD monograph about surgical knots by
Greek Physician Heraklas. Examples of specific knots depicted in the works here were known to
help a woman breastfeed, cause impotence in a cheating husband or cure muscle cramps in
humans and animals throughout Central Europe and Scandinavia.

Works use techniques of natural dyeing, hand stitching and macrame. Materials have been
sourced from Icelandic nature (dandelions, lupine, rowan tree berries and chlorophyll) as well as
Finland (lupine, pink granite and various flowers) through a walking and foraging practice.
These are boiled with rusted objects washed ashore from the sea to create site specific
pigments and non-repeatable patterns on cloth. The artist used her one month residency at
Gjutars to complete this body of textile works that links the two countries.

Theoretical threads of cultural anthropology, ecofeminism and hydrofeminism contextualize the
work while it ties the artist's body to various forms of ecology. Her practice can be seen as a
form of alchemy in which ordinary materials are transformed into gold. Around the potent time of
midsummer, this exhibition aims to shine light on the threads that tie women to creation, guided
by the Finnic shamanism belief that nature has the answers to all questions

Bildschirmfoto 2021-05-08 um
Bildschirmfoto 2021-05-08 um
Bildschirmfoto 2021-05-08 um
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