‘Embodying Entanglement’ explores how abjection can be used to voice experiences of trauma that are otherwise unable to be described in words. Godden engages her own brown body with materials such as curry powder, chilli powder, flour, hair, collections of eggshells, and pomegranates in unconventional ways to convey the clash between catharsis and repression. Each of the materials become intrinsically bound to the body through absorption into the pores and through swallowing. Godden’s performative gestures explore how personal histories of sexual assault, cultural heritage, and the body in relation to geographic space can be conveyed through material engagement with the body.
Vanessa Godden is a PhD candidate at the Victorian College of the Arts and recipient of the Melbourne International Research Scholarship. She received her BFA from the University of Houston (2012) and MFA from the Rhode Island School of Design (2014). Her artistic practice uses performative gestures to explorehow personal histories of sexual assault, cultural heritage, and the body in relation to geographic space can be conveyed through material engagements with the body.