Pillflowers, 2003 - ongoinginstallation, objects, hybrid reality, sculpture, surface design

The Pillflower Project consists of scanned images of pills and tablets, digitally manipulated into flowerlike Mandelas, as well as actual medicinal pills physically assembled into miniature flower sculptures. These two and three dimensional pillflowers are then used to decorate both functional and sculptural work including a toilet, martini glasses, wallpaper, window coverings, tiles, bedding and bouquets – a veritable pillflower world.

Happiness can seemingly be produced through the use of modern pharmaceuticals; not only by taking them, but also by the magnetism of their colourful and candy-like appeal. The omni-presence of pills and drugs is augmented by practices of self-medication, evidenced through a pill-popping society that is continually fed ubiquitous promotion and marketing advertisements that ‘legitimate’ and ‘illicit’ the supposed need.

In our culture there is no space for slow enlightenment, we need ultimate revelation instantly. We search for quick-fixes that are often accompanied by harm. The Pillflower Project emphasizes dynamic oppositions in contemporary culture: notions of happiness and sadness, self-remedy and self-sabotage, nostalgia and stark reality, intoxication and sobriety.

The pillflowers accentuate the range of soft, baby-like tints pills are coloured: pale pinks, blues, purples and greens. These sentimental colours signal a nostalgia for what we often refer to as a simpler time - the domestic life of the 1950s. A video animation of the pill-flower patterns in Pillflower Animation (2005) is set to groovy music. The changing images synced with the music, create a hallucinatory effect, a reflection of the purpose of many of these pills. Within the context of the domestic they invite the viewer to think further about secrets of pill-taking that occur behind the closed door of a bathroom. The clean aesthetic and sterilized presentation of the Pillflower Project alluded to by the hospital-green often used as border or background, references the site of illness, unhealthy activity and the sadness that often causes it.

The Pillflower Project uses domestic, functional objects in order to evoke the atmosphere and impression of another time and cultural conventions. Blow Series (2006) makes light of the combination and relation of martinis and pills by depicting a pillfower in each martini glass. Presented on a mirror, one’s interaction with the glass recalls the 1950s marketing of glamorous movie stars sipping on cocktails. The work ignites a sense of ideal days gone by that never existed, in which one fetishizes aspects of different eras. The martini speaks directly to the cocktail culture in which the stay-at-home, serving wife prepares a drink for her working husband. The drink becomes a metaphor for her fidelity, and is touched with femininity, evidenced by the pretty flower in its base. Similarly, rather than being seen only as a contaminant, an ordinary white toilet sprouts pill-flowers from its bowl. Pillflower Toilet (2006) transforms the process into growth and flourishing beauty; making excrement pretty.
Gallery Essay

 

Pillflowers, 2003 - ongoinginstallation, objects, hybrid reality, sculpture, surface design

The Pillflower Project consists of scanned images of pills and tablets, digitally manipulated into flowerlike Mandelas, as well as actual medicinal pills physically assembled into miniature flower sculptures. These two and three dimensional pillflowers are then used to decorate both functional and sculptural work including a toilet, martini glasses, wallpaper, window coverings, tiles, bedding and bouquets – a veritable pillflower world.

Happiness can seemingly be produced through the use of modern pharmaceuticals; not only by taking them, but also by the magnetism of their colourful and candy-like appeal. The omni-presence of pills and drugs is augmented by practices of self-medication, evidenced through a pill-popping society that is continually fed ubiquitous promotion and marketing advertisements that ‘legitimate’ and ‘illicit’ the supposed need.

In our culture there is no space for slow enlightenment, we need ultimate revelation instantly. We search for quick-fixes that are often accompanied by harm. The Pillflower Project emphasizes dynamic oppositions in contemporary culture: notions of happiness and sadness, self-remedy and self-sabotage, nostalgia and stark reality, intoxication and sobriety.

The pillflowers accentuate the range of soft, baby-like tints pills are coloured: pale pinks, blues, purples and greens. These sentimental colours signal a nostalgia for what we often refer to as a simpler time - the domestic life of the 1950s. A video animation of the pill-flower patterns in Pillflower Animation (2005) is set to groovy music. The changing images synced with the music, create a hallucinatory effect, a reflection of the purpose of many of these pills. Within the context of the domestic they invite the viewer to think further about secrets of pill-taking that occur behind the closed door of a bathroom. The clean aesthetic and sterilized presentation of the Pillflower Project alluded to by the hospital-green often used as border or background, references the site of illness, unhealthy activity and the sadness that often causes it.

The Pillflower Project uses domestic, functional objects in order to evoke the atmosphere and impression of another time and cultural conventions. Blow Series (2006) makes light of the combination and relation of martinis and pills by depicting a pillfower in each martini glass. Presented on a mirror, one’s interaction with the glass recalls the 1950s marketing of glamorous movie stars sipping on cocktails. The work ignites a sense of ideal days gone by that never existed, in which one fetishizes aspects of different eras. The martini speaks directly to the cocktail culture in which the stay-at-home, serving wife prepares a drink for her working husband. The drink becomes a metaphor for her fidelity, and is touched with femininity, evidenced by the pretty flower in its base. Similarly, rather than being seen only as a contaminant, an ordinary white toilet sprouts pill-flowers from its bowl. Pillflower Toilet (2006) transforms the process into growth and flourishing beauty; making excrement pretty.
Gallery Essay