Masks and costumes, mainly copied from collections in Western museums, are reproduced by weaving together plastic bags. The masks are displayed on wooden stands made from sections of a recreation of the iconic modernist Rietveld chair. The interwoven associations create a critical material and associative dialogue between European modernisation and its on-going impact on other cultures. The work finds analogies between the bags that transport items from one state to the next – store to home – and the masks which are now objects adrift but once used in sacred rites of passage, from one state to the next-boyhood to man, life to death.
This series of masks was first exhibitied in the exhibition entitled 500 years. The exhibition included three interrelated bodies of work that take the lifespan of a plastic bag as a historical period. Instead of looking forward, however, it looks back to link a period of history that has defined the contemporary age, from the earliest colonisation of the Americas, the Renaissance in Europe and the subsequent modernisation, industrialisation and globalization that pervade contemporary life.