Iris Priest



Wislic ðâs tôhwon hæfdetôforansettan foran,
ðâs sê fers forðfolgian efenlang,
from ðâs ðe bytlan
Magic brycg betwêonan

For those who have come before,
those who will follow after,
And for those who build the
Magic bridge between

On this high spot amidst an unstill landscape, garlanded by the plaintive cries of curlew, we retrace our footsteps through the names bestowed; Monday Cleugh, Shorthope Burn; Sunnyside; Pinkie Shank; Black Hag. From sucking bog and whispering crag to cleaving wind and gathering cloud, we feel we have been here before.

An object is only an object when taken out of context; when it is physically or conceptually removed from the interrelated spatial, temporal, social and environmental ecology it is a part of.
In platforming or collecting objects we attempt to take these beings out of the continuum of time and space in order to halt them (to have and to hold) and, in doing so, to take possession of a fragment of the infinite.

The living rock (omphalus), around which time and sky pivot, teems with tacit meaning. As the world turns to sleep the ghost-cold stars watch the stone cut its spiral ark and blink with the same shared blackness.

Language and perception give rise to a whole network of assumptions in regards to subjects, objects, verbs, agents and the envelope of time they operate within. As the creators of language and conduits of perception we humans tend to privilege our own experience of reality over other nonhuman realities. The notion of “I” as a stable and autonomous agent privileges “I” both in sentence structure and the ordering of reality. “I dreamed of the rock” never “Rock dreamed of the I”.

Instinct for art began before petroglyphs or people, ruins or words, it was already here in the dancing wind and breaking waves, amongst the changing sky and song of the stones. The impulse was never a break or a departure, it came with the gloaming, the gleaming, the quickening and the awakening in shapeless states and pangean being. We may have forgotten but the stone never forgets.

  • Role Artist

  • For Painting // Printmaking // Illustration

  • Date 2008 – Current

  • Type Painting, Printmaking, Drawing, Illustration, Commissions, Design

  • URL Iris Priest

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