A derelict cottage, left as if the people had just walked out 20 years ago, has been the source of my work for the last few months. A purse, a pot of pills, children’s toys, clothes – everything left undisturbed. Why did they leave everything? The unknown quality is what moves me – the trace left of lives lived, meaning implicit and implied in the objects and how they were left. From graffitti on a window I know there was a woman, her husband, daughter and granddaughter living in the house.
I recognise different aspects of myself in the three generations of women – as I was as a child, a mother and now a grandmother. The man’s presence is more remote, a coat, a tin of shaving cream and a DIY book are the only signs of his existence but an old council workman’s hut I found has filled in his presence for me outside of the house.