Picturing was part of the exhibition Nesting Watering Picturing, at SET, London.
The exhibition explored the concept of ‘work’ in an expanded sense of the word, and how the concept structures much of contemporary experience and identity.
The exhibition installation consisted of a theatrical environment inhabited by three costumed and masked ‘characters’ – each representing a different kind of work; Nesting (whose mask is a birdbox) for ‘emotional labour’, Watering (whose mask is a watering can) for vocational labour, and Picturing (whose mask is an enlarged pinhole camera) for the labour involved in cultivating self-image.
A short script was written from the point of view of each of these three ‘characters’, exploring the psychological and emotional effects of undertaking the different kinds of work each character embodied. A recording of the scripts spoken aloud played in the exhibition space and was synchronised with spotlights that illuminated each of the characters in turn as their part was read. This happened on repeat in the exhibition space. In addition to the above, several props/found objects including a dead tree, a rake, and the roots of dead plants and wall painted elements – relating to the exhibition scripts – also constituted the installation.
Video documentation Nesting on Vimeo: