Alice Crawford McKinty has been a regular member of the choir at Huddersfield Parish Church over the last year or so. In that time she has also used different space in St Peter’s for inspiration and the differing light throughout the day to influence her creations. Contemporary art has many facets and Alice is using e space and light of Huddersfield Parish Church as a wider canvas to display some of her more traditional works in oils and pencil.
Noticing that things built by man often lose out to nature, there can be a strong element of destruction linking so closely to humanity that it can’t be ignored. Growing up on the Gower Coast of South Wales, McKinty frequently came into contact with remains of ships and became fascinated by the tranquility that comes to accompany these wrecks over time.
Upon discovering a relative of hers perished in a shipwreck on the Gower Coast in 1802, McKinty came to realise that whilst the men involved in these disasters often lost their lives, the ships themselves are granted a new life in their death.
Sitting like exquisite sculptures in the coastal landscape, shipwrecks become a symbol of birth, death and ageing simultaneously; constantly changing due to erosion and shifting due to tidal influence, these vessels embark on an absurd journey. They have no control, and their fate is seemingly dictated by nature alone. One must not forget, though; that the vessels’ own build and nature, which is both physically and philosophically grounded in humanity, dictates their reaction to that surrounding natural environment.
As such, the relationship between vessel and nature, just like that of man and nature, is not one of the a submissive and the overpowering. Rather, the relationship becomes a conversation, with constant oppositions being found and resolutions being made.
This series of works sits firmly within idealism- a principle that came to be widely recognised in the early-mid eighteen hundreds and coincided with the birth of artistic romanticism. This series highlights the significance of traditional thought and mediums to contemporary art, and attempts to place them of equal footing to the more subjective approach seen so widely in art today.