Susan Hamston is an artist based in the South West of England.
Her work looks at the entanglement of an art practice with the domestic space.
Family life, the negotiation of the domestic space and the influence of objects are all inextricably linked and are explored using sculpture, drawings, and video. Rather than seeing the objects we surround ourselves as commodities, there is more a desire to express a kinship with them. As expressed by Timothy Morton ‘In order to care about things, you have to have some kind of unconditional love for them, no matter what they are…collaborate with things.’ The use of materials and the interchangeability of the objects involved from functional to non-functional shows the potentially mercurial quality and versatility of everyday objects. They can have an almost magical ability to transmit one meaning then another depending on what use they are being put to. This is the kind of sculpture where permanence is not celebrated, a kind of unmonumental sculpture.
The domestic environment can be fraught with monotonous and repetitive tasks. By using this space as a point of departure, a reimagining can occur which opens the way for fantasy and an escape from these everyday undertakings. This can be a means of survival when feeling swamped by the everyday stuff.
With working space for artists often being expensive and limited, much of the work is portable and has been set up in a variety of locations becoming nomadic. This has resulted in some unorthodox assemblages and has placed elements of a private domestic arena into public places. Because of spatial limitations, versatility, and the ability to communicate in a variety of contexts has become a crucial aspect of Hamston’s practice.