Jocelyn McGregor

Moth (2017)

The Moth, the 'nocturnal butterfly', 'death bird', is representative of the soul.

The curtains are made of synthetic grass made from synthetic hair extensions... thousands of them. They were born straight out of my love of drapery, of those creepy signifiers in horror movies that tell you that something from the outside has been let in; whether you're watching the curtains billow out in say Poltergeist or peering at through that wedding veil in The Others at the features of a young girl combined with those of an old woman - the drapery always tells me that everything is about to change, it's exciting. In ancient Rome a woman's wedding veil would become her funeral shroud; and according to superstition you should keep the curtains shut at the time of death so the devil can't ride a moonbeam down between the gap to steal away the soul of the decesased. They're penetrable, permeable skins that barely separate inside from outside, one world from another; concealers not barriers. Ever shifting.

And what hangs between them are moulds of the disused RAF aircraft my dad once flew.

I wanted to make bodies out of these machines like they made machines out of bodies. I cast them in plaster and heamatite powder. Heamatite. That’s from the Greek word, ‘hema’, meaning blood. Superstition holds this stuff in association with life sustainment and, of course, also the opposite: death. It was once used to coat bodies before burial. Long seams, veins of it run through the Cumbrian Landscape. That’s where I got my heamatite pigment from, it’s ‘Egremont Red’ made by the Florence Paintmakers working on the site of Florence Mine – the last deep iron ore mine in West Europe when it closed in 2008. It’s pretty close to where I grew up. The miners were nicknamed “The Red Men of Cumbria” because they were always covered in the stuff. Jocelyn McGregor - Moth - install copy for website - colour test.jpg angle moth_v2.jpg Moth - wide angle 3 copy 2.jpg Jocelyn McGregor - Jennifer (suspender) through Moth copy_v2.jpg moth - creeper detail copy for website.jpg moth - spider detail copy.jpg