Barbara Knežević’s large sculpture, 'Deep time empaths', uses the material language and colour palette of construction sites to create an empathetic and affective response to materials usually considered secondary, detritus, or junk.
A scaffold is assembled into a large skeletal frame; it holds everything together. Materials, such as resin, tarpaulin, steel, plastic, cord, clay, concrete, and pallets are put into contact with soothing handmade elements. Surfaces are decorated through sewing, cording, knotting. Limbs adorned with ceramic armour. Safety harnesses are strung beside resin-moulded sculptures. Their jelly-like translucency evokes the remnants of fleshy innards, or perhaps, prophetic of fossilised plastics conceivable in our future geology. A vibrant tarpaulin hangs as a scenographic backdrop. Its centre a hole that mirrors the building’s overhead beams. It manifests the atmosphere of a staging. Cloaked in beauty. Battered and glimmering, 'Deep time empaths' appears as a makeshift animal-hybrid sculpture, an anthropomorphic creature occupying this space.