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Doubt and Willingness was a diptych of drawings and a performance with Layan Harman as part of Messages from the Future, a group exhibition curated by Shivani Khoshia. She writes:

Messages From the Future reflects on the artist’s imagination as a channel for transmitting our hopes & dreams for the future into the now - ideas about what’s important to us, how we want to live, or what we want to see differently in the world. How what we create now contributes to the conversations around us, and has the potential to influence & shape each other, our future, as a collective.

The drawings and performance describe a process of moving through stagnation and self-doubt, and finding the willingness to let go of the familiarity of the small self to fall into wonder and the loving embrace of the world. The drawings and garments (made by Layan) are dyed with oak gall ink; the foraged clay sound-vessels Layan performed with resemble the shape of oak galls. This ink has been used since the 1100s to write manuscripts; its purplish stain, acidic quality and stench of blood - because of the iron oxide used in its reaction - draw upon associations of mulch, winter, decay and death - associations that are still very present in a cold early April as spring struggles into being. We were thinking about the Anthesteria, a Dyonisian festival celebrating spring, new wine and the dead.

With thanks to Maggie Campbell and Sonia Odedra for styling & makeup, and Francis Slip for photos.

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