'X Marks the Spot' Series
X Marks the Spot are pieces which are the least explicitly narrative I have designed, but perhaps among the most wide ranging in concept. Hollow, box constructed cross forms were lined with gold leaf, set with cross shaped cultured pearls or with willow twigs. The imagery comes from my observation and recording of visual markers and indicators and I describe these works in the exhibition catalogue as ‘Stating a claim, whether a kiss, a ballot paper, the Saltire or a potent religious symbol. Throughout life we make decisions which are clearly marked, our fate often sealed by a signature, the state of a nation determined by the placing of an X.’ (figs 6.27 – 6.40) The figurative artist and collector Lys Hansen wrote to me on acquiring one of these brooches in 2004,
My response to this work was that it immediately reminded me of an underground passage in the recently built iconic Jewish Museum in Berlin, designed by the architect Daniel Libeskind. The overhead lighting at the cross-over, forms an illuminated cross to light the way. It is a beautiful piece reminiscent too of the Scottish Saltire, with the human form (cultured pearl) caught within its human condition. (Hansen 2004).(figs 6.41 – 6.43)
Hansen’s description corroborates my intent that the X acts as a marker or the Saltire and takes it to a new level of interpretation through her own frames of reference.