The Burden I (2018.11)

Catalogue Record

Collection

Maker

Title

The Burden I

Made in

London

Date

2016

Description

Hollow vegetable tanned leather necklace. It was shown as part of Form + Motion, an exhibition presented by the British Council and the Crafts Council, at the UK Pavilion at the 10th Cheongju Craft Biennale in 2017.

Materials and techniques

Vegetable tanned leather used.

The leather was cut into cords. The cords were knitted by 12 size knitting needles to form the ‘U-shape’ suspending part of the work. Two ends of the knitted part were connected by a roundly structured ‘neck’ – weaved and twined with 1cm wide leather strips. They were attached by cotton thread.

The maker then dipped the whole piece into two litres of cold water with two spoons of glue mixed in it. Once it was completely wet, the maker placed the work around a mannequin. The knitted part were then moulded with objects the maker got from her grandparents and friends which she cherishes most – oil lamp, wooden mallet, dry pumpkin and souvenir of Aleppo Castle. These objects were enclosed the knitted part by stitching the cords together with crochet hooks. They were then left to dry for three to five days.

When the work was completely dried, the maker cut the stitches to remove the enclosed objects. Shapes of the objects formed a hollow form as cords were hardened after drying. The maker finished the piece by stitching the gap again with a crochet hook and leather cord of same colour.

Dimensions

height:  90cm
width:  45cm
depth:  40cm

Object number

2018.11

Category

  • The Burden I, Esna Su, 2016. Crafts Council Collection: 2018.11. Photo: Stokes Image Ltd.

  • The Burden I, Esna Su, 2016. Crafts Council Collection: 2018.11. Photo: Stokes Image Ltd.

  • The Burden I, Esna Su, 2016. Crafts Council Collection: 2018.11. Photo: Stokes Image Ltd.

  • The Burden I, Esna Su, 2016. Crafts Council Collection: 2018.11. Photo: Stokes Image Ltd.

Maker's statement

The piece’s been made in the following of my graduation in 2015. It is one of the piece that I combined weaving and knitting together which gave another dimension to the piece itself. It does stand out from other The Burden I collection because of the shape and combination of using different techniques to create a neckpiece.
The Burden I, is based on the struggle of Syrian refugees who have been forced to abandon their hoes and flee the conflict, continuing their lives in memories in sprawling refugee camps.
The work reflected my observation while I was in my hometown Antioch/ South of Turkey where most of Syrian refugees reached in order to secure their lives. My work mainly underline how those people’s built life destroyed and that results with loss of homes, land and belongings. Their continuation of lives will be in isolated societies by hoping to go back to their countries where they belong to.
The empty shells represent the memories of destroyed lives by moulding knitted vegetable tanned leather cord around my cherished objects. Vegetable tanned leather used as material as it was once a skin and took the form of a body now it embraces the sentimental objects to form hallow shapes, which in return contain memories and the loss of the past.

Esna Su, 06 April 2018