Masters student Helen Acklam's research explores concepts of memory and loss.
18 Sep 2013
A University of Brighton Faculty of Arts masters student is creating a range of artwork based on materials and equipment she is gathering at a local hospital.
MA Fine Art student Helen Acklam, who is currently artist in residence at the Royal Sussex County Hospital in Brighton is basing her research, entitled Remains, on the idea of loss and the concept of the personal and collective memories of patients, staff and visitors to the hospital using video, audio, painting and sculpture.
Her materials include the fabric of the soon to be redeveloped buildings, together with objects such as discarded equipment. Moment (above)is based on a brick from one of the buildings. Helen said: " I wanted to be able to show the insides of the brick...and retain the handmade markings of a brick from this era."
Helen, whose daughter has been a dialysis patient, said: “Through my residency at this unique site, I've been able to explore my experiences and thoughts around the precariousness of the human condition. The hospital is a site of emotional and symbolic significance for me, that harbours memories and experiences in its very fabric.”
“I've had fantastic support from staff at the dialysis and histology units, who have given me time and practical help to collect materials. The patients and staff in the dialysis unit collected needle packets for me - 1,600 to be exact - roughly the amount my daughter used over 10 years of treatment. I made that into a piece - a mound with the hope of conveying it as an obstacle of waste.”
The project is part of a partnership between the Faculty of Arts and Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals NHS Trust, which it is hoped will move forward as a new hospital is built on the site over the next few years.
Helen's creative work is ongoing, with one of her paintings on show at STRARTA Art Fair in London next month in the category of 'Best Emerging Artist'. The results of her creative work at the hospital will be on show at her final MA show next year.
Images: Moment from Remains - resin cast of hand-made brick, circa 1828. Sculpture, 1200 x 685. 10 years. Sculpture, 800 x 1200. Both by Helen Acklam, 2013.