De Pulford’s personal relationship to Catholicism is a core basis for her practice – she explores ideas around transubstantiation; the ritual of giving bread and wine at Communion which then (as they are blessed) become the body and blood of Jesus Christ.
In this, De Pulford examines the way the image of the body is displaced onto objects and what happens to that image when those objects go through a series of changes, or are made consumable in some way. For Simnel, she uses sculptural works made of wax with inlaid text, that are set alight, to track and perform the shifting relationship between objects and the body.
In Simnel, De Pulford uses Popeye as a symbol of paternal estrangement, paraphrasing his complicated relationship to his father ‘Poopdeck Pappy’ in selected texts. These provide reference to De Pulford’s own relationship with masculinity and its figures: father, lover, Christ. ‘Do Nothing Forever’ addresses her apathy towards these intense connections.
Helena de Pulford (b. 1990) is a visual artist, sculptor and writer. She graduated with a first class BA from Central Saint Martins in 2015. In her graduating year, Helena was awarded the Cass Art Prize and selected for the Acme associate studio programme. Since graduating, she has exhibited and presented her research internationally. Recent exhibitions include Recreational Grounds V, Dateagle at Wendover House, London 2019; The Floor is Lava, Subsidiary Projects (for Art Night London) 2018; PC4PC, Railton Road, London (2017); Let them eat fake, Bad Art presents, London (2017); Iron, Maskinhuset, Dalarna, Sweden (2017); Come on Craig, Crate, Margate (2017) and Goat, Newlyn gallery, Cornwall (2017).
'Simnel' is curated by Georgia Stephenson.
Exhibition graphic design by Studio Hyte.