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dc.contributor.authorCostantino, Thea
dc.identifier.citationCostantino, T. 2016. Fall. creativework. Success Art Space.

Broadly, Costantino’s work investigates the representation and memorialisation of the past: the use and abuse of history, the continuing influence of the past on the present, and the ways in which repressed or forgotten material can resurface. Histories of modernity and colonialism are of particular interest to the artist, and she frequently employs grotesque aesthetics as a means of exploring uncomfortable or marginalized aspects of these narratives. A pig’s head affixed to a golden spike, with sprinkling of golden flies, Fall draws continuities between the mid-twentieth century cultural moment and the present. Referring to William Golding’s well-known novel Lord of the Flies (1954) and the range of contexts in which severed pigs’ heads have been deployed as threats against particular groups, Fall evokes a dystopian atmosphere. The title refers somewhat ironically to the decline and fall of ancient Rome. The erotic, aesthetic and economic excesses of the Empire have popularly been presented as the cause of its extinction, and the origins of Rome’s defeat by marauders and Europe’s descent into the so-called Dark Ages. There is a deeply moralistic sentiment in the construction of decadence as a theory of history. It posits disproportionate wealth, aesthetic sophistry and sensory excess as the unnatural bloating of a civilisation beyond healthy limits. It is the disease of an overly secularised civilisation, a sickness caused by a surplus of culture and a broken connection to the world of myth, religion and social order. Fall parodies the anxieties that present Western heritage as under siege from barbarous invaders, and instead points to the violent forces from within its own borders.

dc.publisherSuccess Art Space
curtin.accessStatusFulltext not available

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