Louisa Chircop

Fingers in her Anguish – (Self Portrait as a Grotto), 2021

29 × 24 × 32 cm
Inspiration for this work came from a subconscious collision of the pandemic with a recollection of memories about building fountains and grottos around my home as a child. The concept of the virus as foreign, harmful and dirty, manifested as fear, anxiety and stress in my body. Feelings that mingled with the pleasures of being isolated and cocooned in the fantasy world of my studio, organically evolving from a perfect storm of elements. ‘Fingers in her anguish’ (self portrait as a grotto) explores the idea of my body, mind and soul taking form in the shape of a grotto. The grotto (self) becomes a place of ritual re-cleansing and meditation – a shrine to the artist’s soul where the viewer is simultaneously invited into my world but is also locked out. The work becomes part of a public arena, dealing with personal truths collected from an insular experience growing up in an immigrant family in Australia. The grotto is a pun about many things. Thinking of the cultural significance of grottos in the European landscape, it’s hard to imagine their reconstruction as sacred shrines in Australia. Their alien-like presence and shady appearance alludes to themes of intrusion, otherworldliness, perversion, ritual, moral cleansing, and existential questioning of the unknown, representing a consecrated visual expression of creativity that is possibly immune from being judged. I continue as a grotto.
Enquire about this artwork
Preferred contact method