Emma McLellan’s installation explores the human desire to collect and the sentiment we attach to everyday objects. Her work is inspired by her research into online, largely institutional, collections of New Zealand made applied arts, crafts and design.
Recovered is an imagined collection made up of fragments that set out to evoke the memories associated with objects. Each fragment is a photographic screen-print. The objects depicted are recognisable, mass produced items which have now become ‘collectable’. McLellan is interested in the nostalgia and memory attached to objects that were once a part of everyday life. She notes that “some everyday objects are elevated to the valued collectible, largely for the memory attached to them”.
In presenting these images from online collections as physical fragments, McLellan aims to trace the journey and changing status from ordinary everyday object to one that is enhanced by, and imbued with, sentiment.
Emma McLellan completed a BFA in printmaking and an MFA in painting at Elam School of Fine Arts, University of Auckland. Mclellan currently lectures in Visual Art at the Faculty of Creative Arts, Manukau Institute of Technology.