BODY BLOCKS Josée Aubin Ouellette
High density foam, removals blankets, hot water bottles, twelve original songs.
The Govanhill Baths, Glasgow International Art Festival F8 – 26 April 2016
Body Blocks is an installation of soft sculptures based on the ergonomic design of medical support cushions. The forms are determined by their potential as props for the body. The installation invites visitors to playfully engage with the installed environment: reclining, lying or sitting to explore the supportive possibilities of the sculptural forms. An original soundtrack of sound and speech can be heard in the background. The soundtrack cites – that is, both repeats and distances itself from – the pervasive phenomenon of mindfulness apps. The work’s invitation to convalesce is thereby subtly situated in the conflictual tension inherent in a burgeoning culture of self-care that goes hand in hand with an increasing ‘neoliberalisation’ of the structures and cultures of work: ambiguously poised between a real offer for an actual clearing and a calculated pause in the service of a quick return to enhanced productivity.