Friday, August 29, 2014

Alice Anderson's Hair Sculptures

Artist Alice Anderson creates works of art using red doll's hair that mimics her own.  Although she does not always credit Rapunzel as her primary inspiration (she likes to confront some of Freud's psychoanalitic notions and remind the viewer of childhood), it's clearly an association many people have when they see rooms full of hair, or a house being overtaken by ropes made of hair.

"In the Studio With Alice Anderson," by Helen Sumpter

Q: Are there specific fairytale references in your use of hair, as in Rapunzel? 
AA: 'There are, but only in the role of the witch, who has imprisoned Rapunzel in the tower and climbs up her long hair to feed her. Her hair functions like an umbilical cord, with the witch in this dual role as both jailer and mother figure. I'm not interested in the fairytale need for a charming prince to come to her rescue.' 

"Alice Anderson: Tressed for success"

 "I'm kind of against fairy tales. The story of a prince and a princess? Ridiculous," says Anderson. "For me, it's nonsense. On the other hand, anything to do with childhood, I use. I use a lot of toys."

I'm sad that present assumptions about fairy tales have made Anderson say she is against them, especially since we know that it's simply not true that all fairy tales are about a princess in need of rescue by a prince. However, Anderson has still contributed to the world of modern fairy tale interpretations, by confronting the viewer with their associations with vast volumes of hair. These videos in which she discusses her inspiration and methods are really kind of creepy...

1 comment:

  1. Yeah... I find it kind of creepy too, though intriguing.