Hilary McCallin Artist portfolio

Submerged X

Collage of printed film, paper, British and French stamps on Ingres paper.

This is one of a series of collages showing at the Brunel cafe gallery during Feb/March 2014.

The construction of the Thames Tunnel by father and son, Marc and Isambard Kingdom Brunel in the early to mid 1800s was made possible by their ingenious invention of the tunnelling shield. Hilary has used the shape of this engineered shield to contrast and conflict with organic shapes that surround and submerge the shield. It is this juxtaposition of geometric versus organic, repelling yet complimenting each other that she finds fascinating and which she has previously explored, notably in some of her sculptures.

Hilary’s father’s stamps are used in the collages to reproduce the collaboration of father and child in the construction of the tunnel and the specific use of British and French stamps pays homage to the Brunels’ nationalities. The collaged British commemorative stamps, which celebrate British history by depicting inventions, scientists, artists and people in history like the Brunels, give a sense of us swimming in our heritage, although the artist’s own fear of drowning is perhaps the driving emotion behind the collages.