Honestly if you look back at even my early works from — even at school, I was making a lot of hybrids; hybrid animals, half tiger half man, half man half bird, and then looking at a lot of mythology, because I was reading a lot from Greek, Hindu, Persian, and whatever I could get in terms of how metaphor could create magic in imagery, I suppose.1 And so for me, it was like, well, you know, why be one thing when the self is always so multiple, and the mind is in so many places?
For me, it just seemed like the perfect way to talk about the ideas that I wanted to look at, specifically the first hybrid woman, which was the photographs. And you know, for me the photographs are a really important starting point of a whole new body of work that happened independently of say the bindi paintings. And they were sort of like the drawings. Those five photographs became — they were like the drawings for a whole new series of sculptures which still continues today. And the genesis of these new sculptures is really the hybrid works.
And what I was trying to do was looking at this sort of very fraught domestic space, where everything from your social, to your political, to your economic power play happens within that space. Also, because I just had children myself. I’d had my — my son was maybe four or five, and my daughter was just three months old — no, I mean, was six. And so, both of them are in the photographs, so I used — and I sort of in some way wanted to have my kids in some work, but — or not myself, but them, so that I could sort of mark that time. And also, just to say hey, like here are these creatures, you know, these creatures come into your life.
And I remember being — there’s one of the hybrid photos where a friend of mine is pregnant. And I felt that it was just interesting to look at the space of the bodies — well, of the female body, almost as like a house in some way, and the idea of what that domestic space was that these kind of strangely grotesque and very powerful sort of urban goddesses standing.2 And if you notice in the pictures, there’s nothing to sort of place the works either in a space, a time, a continent, a place. Even there’s no shadows in the works. So, they really are apparitions. For me, they really were about that.