Dissecting a violin body, 2019

 A solo exhibition at Bus Projects, Collingwood. 

This series of works investigates how the violin can be conceptualised as a surrogate body. This metaphoric relation is embedded in the terminology of the violin as its components are referred to as the belly, back, ribs and neck. Yet, Violins are not simply mute bodies, they are bodies that can speak. As one of the many devices that humans have developed in order to communicate with one another, through non-linguistic means. The creation of a violin opens up a space of potentiality, a physical site from which non-rational communication can occur.

This line of research was catalysed by a visit to my sister’s luthier studio in Glasgow, where she showed me a partially carved violin belly, the precise curvature of which would create the potential for sound. After returning to Melbourne, I stumbled across an open source book online called ‘The Art of Violin Design’ by Sergei Muratov. In this book Muratov charts the various curvatures of a violin body, looking at Stradivarius violins in particular. He picks apart the body of a Stradivarius, attempting to discover the source of its esteem, and the means of its production. This analytical and devoutly empirical approach positions the physical body of the violin as the site from which all information about it can be extrapolated. This exhibition opens up the violin body to investigate what intangible associations it might possess. 

All photos by Lucy Foster

The arches of the belly and the back (360° model), 2019

Stoneware, acrylic, aluminium

Rib of Stradivarius (mythological scale), 2019

Paperclay, acrylic, aluminium

Voice box (cross section), 2019

Stoneware, acrylic, aluminum

Let's go back to the start, 2019


For more information on this project please follow this link.

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