In the work ‘Desire is’ a vinyl acrylic mirror ( 124.5cm h x 246cm w) has the text
‘Desire is the very essence of man’ laser cut in to the mirror. The quote is from Baruch Spinoza a dutch philosopher from his essay ‘Ethics’. The artwork uses the language of advertising in the medium but with a message to consider the desires we encounter on an everyday level. Due to it being flexed in a convex way, the viewer can see an elongated view of their body. The mirror used in this work is more commonly used in advertising and shop displays.
The desire Spinoza means is an emotion, similar to pleasure and pain. His idea of desire is an appetite, a wish to survive and live.
‘Nobody can desire to be happy, to do well and to live well
without at the same time desiring to be, to do, and to live;
that is, actually to exist.’v (Spinoza)
By using mirrors as a metaphor for desire, the perspex mirror creates an illusion of the body. We are confused with our body image and the image we see in shop mirrors. We are made identify with ourselves first and then the product.
This work was exhibited with
Thisisnotashop in No Soul For Sale 2 at the Tate Modern Turbine Hall part of Tate's 10th anniversary 14th - 16th May 2010.
Dublin Contemporary 2011 at Earlsfort Terrace venue
6th September- 31st October 2011