Cornelia Parker

Alongside my work I have also been looking at the work of Cornelia Parker, in particular her piece ‘Cold dark matter: An exploded view’.

Cornelia Parker ‘Cold Dark Matter: An Exploded View’, 1991 © Cornelia Parker

The first piece ‘Cold dark matter: An exploded view’ explores the imagery and the symbolism of the ‘everyday’ shed – and how this is disturbed through its destruction and re-assemblance.  In the audio transcript alongside this piece on the Tate’s website, Parker highlights the following points about her work:

“The garden shed came about because I was trying to find something universal and archetypal and that we all identified with and that was familiar to us. It’s not the house but it’s this kind of attic-y private place at the bottom of the garden which we put all our left-over stuff in. And so it seemed like a depository rather than the place that you live.”

“And so that’s what I was trying to do, to organise something that was totally beyond our control and emotional control”

The ideas that Parker has behind her work are very interesting and something that I feel could be drawn upon in my project. It seems that the shed and the handbag have a number of similarities, both are familiar places in which to store ‘stuff’ in, a private and personal space in which to assemble objects of emotional and practical importance. What Parker succeeds in doing is taking this holding place full of objects and completely destroying its comfort, privacy, security and purpose. This is an idea that I would like to see forming some of the work that I am doing.


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