Edgar Modern artist Toni Cogdell wrote a personal response to the themes of our upcoming exhibition, Ecriture Feminine:
She is not contained. Disregard the faded and yellowing veil that conceals her fire. That myth of composure, the refined gentile flick of her wrist softening like the edges of a lily against the early hours of morning, the pleasantries laid out for you in her curves. Her silence. In truth there is a storm breaking within her, exuding from her in waves. Circles and cycles, ceaseless, no beginning no end, carrying her words from the darkness to break onto the shores of light. Volcanic and arching she holds the hand of Pele, revelling in flood, fire and afterglow, teaching the truth of beauty.
Masked and blindfolded she still sees through the darkness, walking inwards with wings at her feet, finding solace and strength in the poetry of her exile. The walls of her heart are painted like the first caves. No longer mute she will write in white ink, her Mother tongue, allowing her Unknown to surface like a pearl through layers of silt and fogged water, salt secreted in its scars. The truth of her form; a monolith, a mountain, a lighthouse beyond an ocean of grief and joy, depths of water beneath a dark mass of land uncharted yet expectant, waiting for its stories to be told, to be sung, demanding a bravery to learn how to let go.
She makes her own marks. They will cut open the inroads to her Self, toward her dark river, releasing her from the marble, giving her breath and to us a new vision – her gaze. Equilibrium. If flying is an art then she will move with the birds, a life in flight, fluttering between heartbeats, between the known places of certainty, between them, in those spaces thrumming with the half-formed shape of things to be, the not-yet realised dreams, the unheard-of songs. Crossing bridges she is the eye of the storm, the centre of chaos, the moment of revelation nestled inside a mathematical equation. She will pull threads from every fragment of the unknown tying them together with the bond of lava, forging a new world. The ink left unmoving, unspoken, will alchemise to poison, but set alight and given over to the currency of Art, it is gold.
Ecriture Feminine is an all-female mixed artist exhibition exploring contemporary depictions of women writing her self, outside of the art historical tradition of the ‘male gaze’. It will include work from Edgar Modern artists Henrietta Dubrey, Roxana Halls, Toni Cogdell and Rachael Read (Rain) as well as three exciting guest artists: Corinna Spencer, Caroline Yates, and Emma Copley.
Ecriture Feminine will open with an afternoon Open View on Saturday 20 February 2016, 1 – 5pm and continue in the gallery until 5 March 2016.