Anney Bounpraseuth: Statement
Rather than waiting in anticipation of paradise, Artist Anney Bounpraseuth believes it can be created in the here and now through love of self, each other, the earth, and life itself.
This work represents the artist’s interpretation of the second phase of recovery from Religious Trauma Syndrome according to psychologist Dr Marlene Winell- Confusion. Based on Lucas Cranach the Elder’s Paradise (1530), the artist has broken up Eve’s abusive relationship with narcissist Adam as a metaphor for the artist’s own break-up with religion, sexual awakening, and understanding of self-love.
In this appliquéd work, Bounpraseuth renovates the landscape beyond Eden from a site of trauma to a garden of healing – a present paradise. In the absence of patriarchal love, a contemporary, independent Eve finds it in the form of healthy relationships with the self, community, and nature.
Textiles play an important role in Bounpraseuth’s work for many reasons. Often, more compassion is shown towards a clothed Adam and Eve in historical embroideries of the Edenic expulsion, as opposed to painted renditions. Most of the fabrics used in Bounpraseuth’s work are sourced from donations from in-person and online community groups she is affiliated with. Piecing these disparate fabrics together symbolises the repair of painful histories in the formation of a new narrative that involves self-belonging and the creation of an individualised community.
As textiles are the second biggest polluter next to fossil fuels, Bounpraseuth’s use of them is in keeping with her sustainable art practice. For example, the roses protected by bell jars are collaged paint waste peelings, sandwiched between plastic tablecloths. Adam’s beard and hair is stuffed with rainbow-coloured fake flowers. The faces of Adam and Eve have been drawn with permanent marker on upholstery samples. The fruit in the orchard has been individually cut from donated still-life paintings and the serpent is an old, linty sock puppet.