Rebecca Kunzi, ‘If I had a heart’

July 3, 2013

Rebecca is one of my work colleagues (and friend) with a secret identity – Financial services by day, creative artist by night. She recently made me aware of an exhibition of her own work at SIX Gallery in Bournemouth, how exciting! So I thought I should show her some love on the blog.

Here’s an insight into the work, taken from her website:

“The subterranean environment beneath our feet – and the Things buried there – act as a point of entry for me in this site-specific work. My research of Bournemouth’s underground inhabitants has led me to uncover Mary Shelley’s burial in St. Peter’s Church, Bournemouth. After Shelley’s death, a grim remembrance was discovered in her desk-box – the cremated remains of her husband’s heart. In this drawing installation I extrapolate marks from the wall and floor to investigate this unseen level of Bournemouth.”

I had a quick chat with Rebecca, as there is plenty more interesting things to say about this exhibition:

I was talking with another friend of mine as he was asking me to explain what I meant by the statement and I was explaining that in order to begin a project I need some kind of anchor. The anchor that I use is always the moon, because all literature about the moon ends up being stories about fear and misunderstanding because it’s a sort of other world, an above plane that we are unable to touch. It’s interesting that subterranean level, underground level literature about the moon are very similar, both have the same themes. I use the moon as my above anchor and I needed a below anchor which is why I researched Bournemouth and found out that Mary Shelley had been buried there. More interesting than that was that when she died it was discovered that she had this desk box and in it she had her dead children’s hair, a poem written by her husband and the cremated remains of her dead husband’s heart. This is because when he died in Italy the law was that to be buried in the British cemetery you had to be cremated first. When that was taking place the guy who was cremating him noticed that his heart was not burning very well so he took it and gave it back to Mary Shelley, who brought it home. So I’m hoping that it gives me a point in Bournemouth to look for more underground existing things happening on that level, and then I’m hoping with the drawing installation that I do I want to collapse the 2 plains so that they form on the same level in order to discover something new about Bournemouth. 

How would you normally describe your work?

My practice is drawing, I think it would fall more under the category of drawing rather than painting, even though I use wet media. It’s mixed media, so the drawing installation it is likely to be graphite, pen, pencil, then maybe some wire installation, I haven’t fully decided yet. My actual practice is drawing, if you were to observe it it’s considered abstract and it’s drawn from a philosophical understanding of bringing something new out. I would say that drawing to me is an experience of push and pull, so you pull something from it and push for other things to appear. I don’t really consider that I’m making drawing, I just facilitate it to be made.

Because we care a lot about clothes here, what was your favourite item of clothing when you were a child?

There’s a picture of me looking very pleased with myself with just a black top but I had these really large, in the sense that they were really baggy, red tartan trousers, that had this huge black belt, that looks like the Santa belt that you see on the costume. I don’t know why, everyone else hated them and thought I looked ridiculous but I really liked them, they must have been insanely comfortable, I don’t know. 

Although I won’t be able to go and see it, I can at least share it with blogland, in case anyone is in the vicinity. If you are, don’t forget to pop around, you won’t regret it! The exhibition opened for private viewing yesterday, the 2nd of July.

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  • Reply SACRAMENTO July 3, 2013 at 07:29

    Thank you for sharing Rebecca´s work, dear sara.

  • Reply PinkCheetahVintage July 3, 2013 at 19:18

    Fantastic interview. I love how she explained her symbolic inspirations in reference to her art.

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