Residue Studies (2019)

  • Laura Blight
  • Lucas Gabellini-Fava

Residue Studies (2019) are hand-made paper works incorporating domestic dust that I have collected from different sources including my own family home. The process of sourcing, collecting and assembling the material is a personal ritual connecting me to the mystery of past events. Printed onto the paper are close-up digital photographs of skin photographed by artist Lucas Gabellini Fava in a recent collaboration project titled 'Collective Strategies'. In The Senses are Still (1996), anthropologist Nadia Seremetakis writes ‘dust is the perceptual waste material formed by the historical-cultural repression of sensory experience and memory’. Residue Studies also symbolises the psychological burden that lives under our skin in the form of repression. Just like dust contains particles of skin, interwoven with memory and traces of people, paper is also a material full of meaning; it is never a neutral surface. I had the urge to make something where substance, form and object were the focus whilst totally submerging the dust in the process. The work also questions the potential of everyday, disposable materials and in a broader context, one that is environmentally sustainable and eco-friendly, rejecting mass-production and returning to the intimacy of the user.