Michelle Abbott

Portfolio: Beautiful Obscenities

2014-2017

“Beautiful Obscenities” is a series of artworks that question the façade of domestic bliss and relationships.

Friends, family and the public at large have been asked the question - “What’s the worst insult you have ever hurled at a loved one, or the worst you’ve ever received?”

Some responses were sent anonymously, some were sung loud and proud.

Whilst many donations fuelled an army of expletives and derogatory terms – “You’re just so fucking perfect”, some responses were chillingly simple in response - “Is this it?”

Surely there is no greater insult you could receive from your lover than you’re like “Cold Porridge”.

Using vibrant silk threads, hand sewn onto embroidery wheels these insults have been reinvented as colourful bursts of abstraction – re-creating something beautiful from something cruel and in turn demoting the harsh into something more pleasing. The comforting familiarity of sewing conjures up cosy associations of Home Sweet Home” – aaahhh the cross stitch hanging by the hearth. Yet scratch behind this veneer of comfort and love and the more brutal reality of domestic bliss and relationships appears. The front portrayed to onlookers can often mask a harsher reality within – what really does go on behind the curtains……