Cecilia White: ‘the grass is greener’


‘the grass is greener’

The saying ‘the other man’s grass is always greener’ raises awareness of desire, dissatisfaction and the location of the self in relation to others. It also raises issues of control and release over time – how may our desires alter, like grass, with the passing of time, the shift in experience, the unsettling of assumptions. Societies establish a vast array of ‘desirable’ objects, a home and garden for example, and an attachment to unsettledness. This work provides a mirror to the questions of what we are dissatisfied with and where we think we are anyway? It reflects on the idea that boundaries are permeable. With the viewer now on the other side, or actually on both sides, surely we are satisfied, fulfilled….or tied to other frames of suffering…..

The grass is greener was installed as part of Cecilia White’s three week solo exhibition THIN AIR in March 2013 at The Lock-Up Cultural Centre, Newcastle. It was installed in one of the five isolation cells of the old gaol, along with a floor of real buffalo grass, sun chair, ceramic garden rabbits and fool’s gold. Cecilia performed for three consecutive days during that show.

Cecilia White – Biographical note

Cecilia White is a Sydney-based interdisciplinary artist working primarily in the field of performance, text, drawing and site-specific installation. She has performed more than 40 works across Australia and internationally, including durational performances over several days. She has exhibited in more than 100 solo and group shows, and had her prize-winning poetry published in Europe and Australia. Her performance work explores a sense of self/other and the potential to create a ‘breathing space’ in a rapidly globalising world. In particular, she engages our awareness of the breath to focus on how anxiety and wonder powerfully frame our existence. She asks what might constitute the ‘breathing space’ in daily life we so often desire? Where might this space be found or created? How might its (non)existence impact the ways we live in the world – as individuals and as a community? Her ‘Breathing Space Projects’, including her chapbook N THING IS SET IN ST NE (Picaro Press 2012) inform her practice-led doctoral studies at UNSW Art & Design, where she is currently tutoring. Cecilia’s most recent awards include a three-month artists’ residency at the Cite’ internationale des arts, Paris in 2014 from UNSW and a Paris Lit Up Writers’ Residency in Rome in 2015. She can be contacted at ceciliawhite@yahoo.com.au  and her website is www.ceciliawhite.com.




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