The energy of difference, charge and attraction is echoed in Affinity (2018), through the copper and zinc, between atoms in the bond between sodium and chloride, and the energy that draws and binds people together.
Materials: Saltwater, Copper, Zinc.
The works work developed through a research residency at Glasgow Women’s library, co-commissioned by Castlefield Gallery and The University of Salford Art Collection for the exhibition Ruth Barker & Hannah Leighton-Boyce at Castlefield Gallery, Manchester.
This new body of work explores salt as a metaphor for the physical and emotional body and residue as an archive through salts inherent properties in its myriad structural forms and formlessness. The notion of sentiment- the intended belief, thought or feeling behind an act- and sentimentality, led me to explore the potential of salt to reflect on the human condition.
The works are inspired by and made with salt, drawing on its inherent properties of division, healing and energy. The work entwines ideas and materials, echoing the physical imprints and human presence, the traces of labour that felt when working with the archived documents of events, political campaigns and movements housed at Glasgow Women’s Library. The works explore how salt can sympathise with the body in its different forms and formlessness, being strong and crystalline yet simultaneously fragile and vulnerable.
Image credits: Simon Liddiard