Primarily Woolley’s artwork is self-portraiture, but not in the traditional sense. She has developed a distinctive, unmistakable practice in which she creates a photographic copy of herself and places it in the real world, becoming a substitute and her visual representative.
In Cut To The Measure Of Desire, Woolley extends this illusion into the realms of performance and installation, constructing a scene reminiscent of the still life, placing herself at the centre of the view whilst attempting to hold up the photographic imagery around her. Staging the twenty-minute-plus enactment Woolley’s tableau is framed by g39’s Victorian shop window. Immersed amongst an intricate scene of butchery, Woolley presents herself as an imperfect being concealed within a 2-dimensional idealised world.
Each gesture and prop is carefully chosen to symbolise promiscuity, commerce and desire. Reminiscent of the traditions of still-life painting and the tableau-vivant, Dawn poses within the scene - an imperfect being concealed within a 2-dimensional idealised world. The aim to uphold the illusion of perfection is futile and the codes of desire crumble under the weight of the spectator’s gaze.
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