• by Vanessa Werring

Caitlin McCormack

While they may initially appear "dark" and "macabre", the animal corpses that artist Caitlin McCormack crochets have a deep sentimental meaning for the artist. Using string stiffened with PVA glue (which produces a consistency similar to the bone tissue of the animals she is recreating), McCormack constructs delicate corpses which appear to decay in front of your eyes.

The process of death, decay and rebuilding is important to Caitlin. The crocheting materials used in her sculptures were inherited from her late grandmother who was a master crocheter and who taught McCormack the skill as a child. Her late grandfather was also a craftsman and created beautiful carved birds out of wood. "I started to create a synthesis of the two crafts, their two art forms to deal with the grief and it turned into this obsessive coping mechanism," McCormack said.

The impetus for these works however contrast forcibly with the end result as Caitlin's animal corpses look to be alive with vitality and optimism; often they appear to be in flight, or sprawled out energetically. She also creates a variety of these works from single skulls (in jars) to complete skeletons to skeleton families who appear interactive.

"I focus a lot on trauma" McCormack ultimately says of her theme. "I want people who have had (traumatic) experiences like that, or have been affected by the experiences of others to feel comforted."

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