A shrine to my first love/ a shrine to self-love is a three-part ritualistic invocation of unrequited love using the elements of water, fire and air with the intention of fostering a liberation of the self.
The ritual began with tearing up unsent love letters written to my first love when I was 15 years old. I then used water to soften them into a pulp to make 14 sheets of handmade paper; one for each year I have kept these letters.
I turn to fire in the second part of the ritual, burning one piece of the handmade paper per day for the duration of the exhibition.
The final element of the ritual is the dispersal of the remnants via the natural circulation of air in the space.
While the transformation of the paper aims to be symbolic of the volatile, obsessive nature of adolescent emotion, the ritual enables me to gradually dislocate myself from and eventually transcend the memories of unrequited love. The final movements of this transformation are then left to the natural elements. This act of liberating the self becomes an act of empowerment through shifting the focus from my first love to my own well being, and actions that are within and beyond my control.
Visual Bulk, January 2018.