After the Taking of Tea 2019 is an installation consisting of hand-cut transfer onto 251 pieces of tableware, on a printed textile running 17 metres along a table surface.
This installation presents multiple groupings of china ware on which the imagery plays with notions of tea and teatime, its historical importance in polite society and its contemporary role in which formality for the most part has been overturned. At each end, the textile and plates spill over the table surface onto the wall and the floor, disrupting notions of laying the tea table.
The women make an appearance to playfully defy historical conventions. They stand on teapots, use tea sieves as mirrors and microphones, and nonchalantly walk across or rest upon the surfaces of tea crockery. The colour, use of gold and ornamentation is informed by the grand salons of the eighteenth and nineteenth century. The texts appear around some of the edges of the ware, as incidental notes that reference literature, politics and the economics of tea.
After the Taking of Tea was first exhibited in Hodes’ solo exhibition, of the same name, at Ruthin Craft Centre, The Centre for the Applied Arts, Wales 2 February - 31 March. It was accompanied by two related papercuts, as well as her projects Remember Me, Spode Trees & Dressed Silhouettes and Dressed in Pattern.
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Photos, installation: Steve Heaton papercuts: Peter Abrahams