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Fusion Talk: In Conversation with Artist Grace, Some.Gal

08/12/2022

Grace, Some.Gal

Grace (SOME.GAL) is a multidisciplinary artist and Digital Art Curator from Sheffield. Her practice is experimental; incorporating mixed media including painting, animation, costume, video, sound design and installation. Grace has a desire to create work which honours figures and narratives hidden from the mainstream.

These Things Matter is a small partnership exhibition between Museum of Colour, Bodleian Libraries and Fusion Arts, featuring six objects relating to slavery and empire, and six contemporary responses created by artists.

Grace's artwork for These Things Matter called 'Explanation of The Colonial Urge'

Grace said:

''I wanted to delve into the mindset of those labelling the land and the construction of identities arising from this map. How colonisation starts in the imaginings of the maps creators, in building upon the mythology of whiteness' as a symbol of civilisation and superiority. This mythology with its refashioned associations to Christianity, has created and legitimised unequal power relationships which are made to appear natural, within the history of colonialism and the commonwealth. Also, how these are continually constructed into the present in new but similar ways, in determining the value of certain populations.

Visiting the printing press, I wanted to incorporate the action of cartography, with the action of classifying human beings into a hierarchy, to justify and legitimise subjugation, exploitation, and conquest. The likeness of Christopher Columbus was used as my visual reference point to examine what the colonial urge looks like.

In asking who defines the savage but has permission to act savagely? I am speaking to how the identities of POC people were and are continually examined under the microscope of this colonial anthropological mindset, and I sought to apply this lens back on the mindset of the creator of the Clarks Map.''

We caught up with Grace to find out more about her artistic practice, commissioned artwork on display, and lastly what is one word you would use to describe the TTM exhibition.

Click to watch Grace's interview.

“My response to the Clarks Charts Map of the world became a visual essay of my investigation into different elements of the map and its creation.”

Please introduce yourself and tell us about your artistic practice.

My name is Grace Lee, and I'm multidisciplinary artist from Sheffield. I like to use lots of different types of mediums to convey the message so that might be a painting, digital art, animation, sound design. I'm really interested in narratives that have been hidden from history and honoring cultural figures in that way and that is why I love being a part of the Museum of colours events.

Can you talk us through your commissioned artwork on display at TTM?

I made a piece called The Colonial Urge, which is a short animated film that looks into the motivations of the Slavery Map, and I wanted to basically turn the kind of anthropological lens back on. The creators of that map and look at their motivation and how coloniazation really started in the mind, and it was kind of programmed on the population. Slavery's map has different categories of people in hierarchy and that is something I wanted to highlight.

What is one word you would use to describe the TTM exhibition?

The word I would use for this exhibition is Warfare!

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