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come to know: Inter-National

25 June - 22 July 2022

Come to Know is a series of art interventions in the atrium at St Peter’s Harrogate. The project title is taken from the words of St Peter when he says of Christ ‘we have believed and come to know that you are the holy one of God’. The aim of the project is to offer visitors and guests the opportunity to ponder meaning and faith through the visual.

This this second intervention we have invited artist Eva Mileusnic to exhibit her sculptural installation works Counter-Flow and Critical Mass alongside a large 2-dimentional multimedia piece Inter-National Grid.

Inter-National Grid uses a repurposed map and book illustrations to remind us of the many cultural identities that go to make up the demography of the British Isles. Counter- Flow and Critical Mass are both made using casting processes from shoe lasts; the moulds used by cobblers to shape and create shoes. For Critical Mass the artist used plaster of Paris and in Counter-Flow she worked with porcelain, which was then decorated to reflect different cultural identities. The power of the piece is the poignant sense of human identity created by the foot lasts, echoing other works by Eva where she often references presence by an absence. One is reminded of the famous sculpture by artist Gyula Pauer of empty pairs of shoes commemorating the Holocaust on the edge of the Danube. The use of foot lasts underlines the idea of travel and migration, also alluded to through the decorative motifs reflecting the personal histories of those who must make such journeys to find safety and refuge. The use of the foot rather than the shoe feels vulnerable, fragile even: A feeling of determination despite great difficulty prevails.

Eva, who is from West Yorkshire, is second generation Hungarian and often explores diaspora and cultural identity within her artworks. We felt that given the ongoing Ukrainian war and continued refugee crisis across our world that it was important to consider the experiences of peoples fleeing their homelands alongside our own attitudes to immigration and how we welcome others into our communities. Her artist’s workshops held at the start of this exhibition will give us a further opportunity to understand each other more.

In the bible Jesus talks about welcoming others into our community and lives in terms of welcoming the divine: “For I was hungry, and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in”. Here at St Peter’s, we believe in inviting everyone in to share the welcome and love of God, for we are all travelling together in this life.

The Counter-Flow porcelain foot lasts will be for sale to raise funds for Disasters emergency Committee

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