Detr: i/us (About My Practice)

photograph from Detr: i/us, a Concept Art Project
Abigail Beeley (2017-current)
At the beginning of 2017 I selected a group of objects which had been in the attic in a box, and began to work exclusively with them. These objects were mementos, the detritus of life, and held a power to provoke unwanted memories and feelings. I decided to attempt to strip them of that power: and so began the complicated web-like project of Detr: i/us.

The project spans disciplines as varied as ceramic, forensics, museology, photography and happening. Each step is scrutinised, each action taken is deliberate and purposeful - all actions, as wide as the net is flung, are part of the journey towards the destined and planned end of the project. There has been set no time limit (a fact that has rubbed me up against the academic system I began working on the project within, as I could not provide a a 'finished piece' at the end of each semester that I worked on the project there). However, I look on that as one of the principle aspects and strengths of the project. This is not an artwork, it is a concept: an exploration. It is a mirror of life.

Detr:i/us (Triptych),
Abigail Beeley (2017)
in .tuath Grays School of Art
December 2017
As part of the concept behind the project, it is one of my aims to leave only the faintest traces of the fact that the project occurred at all. This particularly suits the nature of the source material on which the project draws its lifeblood. Of which, for the sake of the integrity of the central aim of the project, I will say no more.

This post should be taken as a small proof that the project happened. At the time of it's writing, I am two video works into the planned series of ten. The videos are the documentary evidence of a journey from meaning to un-meaning. Currently, you can view them one by one as they are published on my Vimeo account. However, once the project has concluded - they will be deleted. Not just from public view, but from my account and the hard drive where the digital elements of this project are stored.

In the case of this post, I leave now the traces of  the information that I have already let go into the public domain. First in the link to my Vimeo page in the paragraph above, secondly what I have already published on my website and further to this, a short summary of a group show in which aspects of Detr: i/us appeared at the end of 2017 at Grays School of Art in Aberdeen.

For the show .tuath, in keeping with the aim of only leaving certain elements as traces (both physically and in the minds of the viewers) I displayed three photographs following standard museum procedure for item loan for a set duration. The the following text appeared in the exhibition catalogue and summarises the project in a poetic light: 

"Detr: i/us is a project with multiple outcomes - 
a question with many answers. 
It is about the curation of memory, 
the obfuscation of information 
and what to do with the bits that are left behind."

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