Adele Todd’s Patrimony

At the SPACE gallery, Trinidad, artist Adele Todd shows her dimensional embroidery sculpture called Patrimony. The installation is expressive of the political state of Trinidad and Tobago and was described as a derrick and fragmented embodiment which the country is leading towards.

Patrimony at the SPACE gallery, Trinidad, 2008

The show Patrimony features my use of wire and embroidery together to create dimension. I chose these materials because I wanted greater freedom with the medium I was using. I enjoy using thread, but I wanted to create something that was both visually strong and interactive.

The idea for Patrimony came about when I completed Hit! A visual documentation on domestic violence (1999/2000) where I decided to look further at the way our leaders treat the citizens of Trinidad and Tobago, or the way the citizens allow the government to treat them. The parallels with domestic violence became clear.

Patrimony is a look at that issue. Using thread and wire of the Coat of Arms of Trinidad and Tobago, I deliberately use a familiar image of our country post independence to ask the question, how are we handling our freedom from colonialism at this time?

There is an awareness of all of the lost potential, and the acute sense that all is lost. Where are the figureheads that can make us feel right again? Unfortunately this feeling is not only relevant to Trinidad and Tobago. The world is in a state of unrest. However, Trinidad and Tobago is a tiny island with huge issues that relate to us specifically, and as a nation, we need to put things right one day at a time, starting with the way that we respect each other. -Adele Todd

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