The Hills erect their Purple Heads


at Vernacular Institute curated by Eva Posas

The Hills erect their Purple Heads is an installation including the the next chapter in a series of graphic, comic book style drawings, fabric and ceramic sculptures; a process-developed installation at the Vernacular Institute, used as a brainstorming session for the production of new texts for a book that will bring together graphic works and essays together, centred on stories and essays about the invisible transmission of emotion.

The narrative illustrates a gathering of people who undergo a radical mutation triggered by manic emotional fluctuations. Their sudden happiness, then flips into to sadness, and begins to manipulate their physical bodies. They begin to peel back, their emotional boundaries disarmed, they physically meld into each other. Surrounding inanimate objects enter the frenzy and are then pulled into the transformation; the architecture begins to pulse and bend, and clay objects begin to duplicate like a viral cells.

The title of this work is a citation from the first line of an Emily Dickinson poem (1688), which Szaflarski found curiously quoted without justification on two separate occasions. The first by micro biologist, Lynn Margulis in her book on symbiotic evolution, and the second in a text book on geomorphology. Wondering why have these citations been left unexplained, we might assume that the poem could speak to an aspect on mutation and morphology, which science could not (yet?) formulate.

The Hills erect their Purple Heads
The Rivers lean to see
Yet Man has not of all the Throng
A Curiosity.
~ Emily Dickinson (1688)