The Space in Between 17
Mixed Media on paper
39cm x 28cm
Running the length of the Phoenix’s brief corridor gallery The Space in Between by Alice Leach, is an exploration of metaphors of the space in between a couple; space - both emotional and physical spanning the intense lifetime of a relationship.
As brief and intense as the corridor itself, the piece uses the body of emotional script taken from journals, texts and emails gathered from the course of the relationship.
“I wanted to visualise the body of words that filled the air between us, blotting out clarity so I started to explore the idea of using my intimate thoughts and his personal emails and texts. I realised that it needed to be text-based so I discarded any images in favour of words.
It begins with hope and light and as the hope fades and the relationship starts to constrict so the writing begins to fracture and disintegrate and the paper darkens. The interplay of my words and his are intended to disorientate and unsettle, to mirror the shifting nature of the relationship. I kept folding and unfolding the paper. Perhaps unconsciously asking myself if I wanted to expose such intimacy or not, or was I thinking of letters? How often had I written a letter but not sent it? I started to bind my hand up as I wrote and it became a continuing struggle to write legibly. It felt important to hinder my ability to write to reflect the struggle of staying in the relationship. The final paper I wrote freely with my left hand, the dominant hand of my partner, not mine, without using any of my words.
I chose to do this not so much because it was his dominant hand and which appeared to overshadow mine, but in an attempt to deny the authority of my own handwriting. I wanted to show his wall of words that he was presenting me with in trying to keep a dialogue alive. The preceding silence where there is no text mirrors the sudden silence of my thoughts after I left him. I had nothing left that I needed or wanted to say.”