Under, In, and Through

Maeve Hind

Click the “Dynamic View” button to interact with the sculpture and view it from multiple angles.

Artist Statement

My experience is a constant negotiation of space as I move under, in and through. I produce works based on my experience as a person with anxiety and physical limitations. I was recently moved to encounter this language from Louise Bourgeois, about useful creation; “I think that to realize an anxiety attack and to resolve it is the highest form of existence […] it is a useful ‘creation.’ useful in the sense that I make progress […]” I interpret this as being useful in that you go through something, you move forward by existing, by listening, with patience. Not useful in aesthetic terms per se. This has made me ask how I can be honest, how I gain and let go of control, how I can move forward by listening to my intuition, as it knows what needs my energy. I am looking at artists who respond to their urban landscape and derive abstract shapes, like Jen Aitken. I am writing more. Trying not to feel so secretive about my fears and behaviours, as this breeds shame. Divulging my thoughts to paper, to an empty room. I write about how it feels to need to escape. I am thinking about the social model of disability and how disabling institutional spaces can be. The social model of disability de-centers the individual, de-centers me, and re-centers the environment. As I bring awareness to the micro adaptations I make, I am tending to my body and my mind. In my recent works, I have developed a visual vocabulary that includes the whole truth of my experience, that brings visibility to my invisible disability. The abstractions of feeling that appear as expressive mark making and globular forms, as well as the rationality of the square building that produces images of buildings and houses. My thoughts, just like houses, stairs, and forms are constructed. In obsessing over this imagery, I am beginning to de-construct it, as well. To de-mystify what aches to be understood, and to accept that it need not be understood. As I have started giving myself permission to experiment and trust, this work emerged in three-dimensional form. In a state of flight, I created something that’s grounded and simultaneously emerging from the ground. Not perfectly straight but real and raw, “under, in, and through” negotiates its verticality. Verticality does not need to parallel that of a building. My rising can fall and rise and fall and rise and fall and rise and fall and rise. It can take time. Just as I sit and wait for the glue between the wooden frame to dry, for each layer of paper maché and plaster to harden, for spray paint to set. My materials teach me that to wait is worthwhile and this is part of useful creation. Colour is celebrated in direct contradiction to the sterility of institutional spaces, and as a source of comfort – a hopeful adaptation. This hopeful adaptation emerges from the ground, interrupting its spatial context, interrupting emptiness. Its colours and shine scream to you, for me. Newspaper torn apart, chicken wire poking through its skin, it stands as it reveals, it is strong and it is vulnerable. It is dialectical, you can have both. It is during the act of creation when I harness my ability to make candidly and give rise to objects that are vibrant and childish in demeanor. This hopeful creation reimagines my being in the world. “under, in, and through” moves me around it, moves me to my knees, and forces me to climb. 

You can see more of Maeve’s work on her instagram: @mjh_art_