Nets/ Nests, 2019

Working with thread and found objects, interventions were made across a range of sites in central London, the Scottish Highlands and the islands of Orkney Mainland and North Ronaldsay, through the summer of 2019.

The thread acts as marker, boundary, route marker, way finder, construction material. Nets/nests are formed and disentangled. No permanent traces are left behind. The work speaks to the need to travel lightly, to tread carefully as we go. 

The work began at the Slade Summer School, a response to the decreasing wild spaces in the city, and the consequential loss of bird life and song. Travelling north to the Highlands of Scotland, the line became lean and taught, exploring binding and boundaries. Against the wide skies of the  Orkney islands, more nests emerged, perhaps here as markers of the tension between a longing for the freedoms of these 'wild' places and the desire for the 'safeness' of domesticity. The plastic detritus found on even the remotest shore made it impossible not to acknowledge the residual presence of polluting human activity.

The summer is set against the rising tide of activism in response to the climate and ecological emergency we are facing. The work feels at times like a fault line opening from the earth, a red line that must not be crossed or a route marker to reconnect with ourselves as part of the earth's ecosystem.

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© 2020 Emma Yorke

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