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Artist Feature

Every week an artist is featured whose single image was published by Der Greif. The Feature shows the image in the original context of the series.

Clare Steele - Descendants

Oct 30, 2019

Descendants is inspired by the connections between Spain and Ireland. The work is concerned with the myths and legends of both countries and those journeys which never wither from memory and result in folklore. With a focus on memory and belonging to a place while engaging with the movement of people over time; the promise of the new while trying to hold onto the past. There is an everlasting quest to find the familiar within the foreign, to connect with our surroundings through what we recognise and can relate to, rather then the unknown. This series attempts to understand the soul’s yearning to see, feel and touch the world around us while also longing to keep the recognisable near and never let go of home.


Artist Blog

The blog of Der Greif is written entirely by the artists who have been invited to doing an Artist-Feature. Every week, we have a different author.

Beneath

Nov 05, 2019 - Clare Steele

On returning to the place where most of my memories lie. New questions emerge and the next chapter begins.

My new body of work Beneath looks at the concept of home and how the places where one is raised plays a role in the construction of identity. It expands on Descendantsdiverging from those themes to examine the connections to home and how a place like ‘Australia’ can create feelings of guilt and restlessness. Reflecting on those unsettling feelings we so often shy away from but are forced to confront in the places we call home.


March

Nov 04, 2019 - Clare Steele

With the passing of each day the foreign becomes the familiar and a sense of home arises.

 

‘Distant places give us refuge in territories where our own histories aren’t so deeply entrenched and we can imagine other stories, other selves, or just drink up quiet and respite.’ – Rebecca Solnit.

 

This quote like so much of Solnit’s work grasps at all the emotions we find in this world where you can go anywhere and see anything at any time, it’s something that our souls are yearning for. To find answers to questions we don’t even know how to ask.


Sea

Nov 02, 2019 - Clare Steele

As your roots deepen to a place, people ground those connections.

 

Liz Wells’ says ‘history turns space into place’ and history only comes from human interaction. Memories of those interactions are sometimes all we have left, like the stories that are passed down from generation to generation changed by each tongue to give people connection to their own histories and relation to place. This residency gave me the opportunity to meet other artists from all over the world, to hear their stories and understand their ways of seeing. Opening up many new things within my photography and something I would encourage everyone to do, if possible.


Mount

Nov 01, 2019 - Clare Steele

With the promise of the new, the heart seeks the familiar within the foreign.

Threading together the research and my own visual language always begins with wandering. Wandering everyday with my camera to start familiarising myself with a sense of place, using slow looking to see things you may normally walk past. There is something very special about seeing a place for the first time, you’re drawn to everything and anything and within this unfamiliar landscape I found my eye was drawn to things so unfamiliar they were comforting somehow.


Land

Oct 31, 2019 - Clare Steele

Places ground us; unfamiliar places give us a chance to see things a new.
Last year I participated in a three month residency near Sevilla, Spain and with very new body of work, I begin with research. This series was inspired by the folklore surrounding the Milesians, the sons of Míl Espáine and their migration to Ireland; my Mother’s homeland. There are many connections between Spain and Ireland but this one fascinated me, how through the passing of these tales one’s soul can be captivated and a land you may never have set foot on becomes something mystical and promises a new understanding of self. While heavily researching these stories I wanted to bring their core ideas into a more contemporary context of place and our connections to it, emotionally and physically. Influence by the writings of Rebecca Solnit, Liz Wells, Bell Hooks, Lucy Lippard and Ursula K. Le Guin; while visually inspired by photographers such as Katrin Koenning, Hoda Afshar, Dragana Jurisic, Alec Soth and Trent Parke who focus on with similar themes. This all shaped the series and how I went about forming the ideas behind it.