18 November 2006 - 13 December 2006

Ruth Hutchinson


Mind's Eye Lashings, a new body of work from Melbourne based artist Ruth Hutchinson, reflects on the way events in the world around us penetrate and colour our thoughts, feelings, dreams, imaginings, and recollections.

"It is about the witnessing of objects and events, global and intimate, beautiful and tragic, public and secret, and everything in between. Torture, sickness, death and natural disasters as well as the small trials and tribulations of everyday existence; each breath, each heartbeat, each shiver, each blink, each smile and wink. Heart felt, heart strings, heart failure," explains Hutchinson.

In one series Ruth has documented a selected group of people from her own life on the hand sanded surface of a cluster of Tagua nuts. Hutchinson gives us but a glimpse of these characters, meticulously painting just their eyes on the luminous surface of the nuts. The 50 plus eyes staring back at us twinkle with the lives of people they represent. We can't help but wonder who exactly these people are.

Hutchinson asks us to ponder the expanse of individual experience through the lens of these eyes, which both interpret the outside world and reflect an internal one. The works revel in the contradictions of the eye, an organ that gives the promise of connection to others but ultimately remind us that we are all separated by the confines of our bodies and thoughts.

"Sometimes we hide secrets from the world and ourselves. We try to exorcise the demons in our heads, the deep dark secrets or the skeletons in the closet. How do we deal with those touchy, anxious, uptight thoughts and images that move too quickly, too slowly, or dodge around our minds," says Hutchinson.

Hutchinson expands on these ideas with a separate group of intimately sized sculptures in the exhibition. With illusions to cages and bars, the mind is presented as a place of entrapment, conjuring the demons that sometime inhabit it. An accompanying series of works on paper draw on surgical motifs, meditating on a human desire to extract the bad or rotten parts of ourselves.

Mind's Eye Lashings continues Hutchinson's ongoing reflection on the world around her, as well as the inner workings of the mind in a playful but thought provoking display.

Artist's profile

View artist profile: Ruth Hutchinson


HUTCHINSON: Mind\'s Eye Lashings (PDF)

Artwork from exhibition by Ruth Hutchinson


Watercolour and gouache on Tagua nut