Many congratulations to our first year Fine Art student Rhian Harris-Mussi for winning the John Farthing Prize for outstanding work in Human Anatomy in the Preliminary Examination. The prize, which is awarded annually by the Ruskin School of Art at the University of Oxford, recognised her work entitled ‘'Nature Morte: Do Women have to be Dead to get into the Dissection Rooms?'
Below, Rhian explains her work:
“The ‘death mask’ depicts the anatomical facial muscles and is constructed from hand embroidered woollen cloth dyed with madder root. The short film entitled Nature Morte: Do Women have to be Dead to get into the Dissection Rooms? places the mask within the context of anatomical waxworks, Renaissance painting and still life (nature morte). The work stands as a ‘memento mori’.
Darkness shades me.
On thy boessem, let me rest.
More I would, but death invades me.
Death is now a welcome guest.
When I am laid, am laid, in earth.
May my wrongs create no trouble, no trouble in my rest.
- Lyrical extract from Dido and Aeneas, Z 626: Dido’s Lament by Henry Purcell, performed by Jessye Norman, Raymond Leppard and the English Chamber Orchestra (film soundtrack) “