For some years Cornelia Parker’s work has been concerned with formalising things beyond our control, containing the volatile and making it into something that is quiet and contemplative like the "eye of the storm". She is fascinated with processes in the world that mimic cartoon "deaths" - steamrollering, shooting full of holes, falling from cliffs and explosions. Through a combination of visual and verbal allusions her work triggers cultural metaphors and personal associations, which allow the viewer to witness the transformation of the most ordinary objects into something compelling and extraordinary.
Cornelia Parker has become known for a number of large scale-installations including Cold Dark Matter: An Exploded View 1991 (collection Tate Modern) where she suspended the fragments of a garden shed, blown up for her by the British Army, and The Maybe 1995, a collaboration with actress Tilda Swinton, who slept in a glass case as part of an installation in the Serpentine Gallery. More recently she wrapped Rodin’s Kiss with a mile of a string to make a new work, The Distance (a kiss with string attached), 2003 for her contribution to the Tate Triennial.
In tandem with the large projects she has been realising an ongoing series of smaller works in various mediums, entitled Avoided Object, working in collaboration with numerous institutions including the British Army, Colt Firearms, Her Majesty’s Customs & Excise, The Royal Armouries, The Alamo and Madame Tussauds.
Her work Heart of Darkness 2004, included in the Biennial, is an installation created with burnt wood retrieved from a forest fire in Baker County, Florida. The fire, dubbed ‘Impassable I’, was intended to be a controlled burn by the U.S. Forest Service, but due to extreme weather conditions quickly became a wildfire that consumed tens of thousands of acres.
This project was part of Sharjah Biennial 8.
Heart of darkness
charcoal from a florida wildfire,