The Affligare, 2010

Adam Reynolds Bursary, Shape Arts/ Spike Island, Bristol

This was my first foray into creating a fake (or fictional) archive. The sculptures made for this work purport to be archaeological discoveries that once belonged to a medieval tribe of mendicants, the ‘Affligare’ (fallen).

The sculptures were displayed in a museum vitrine and were accompanied by institutional signage, furniture and a backdrop, attempting to maximise the plausibility of the fictional account of the ‘discovery’ in the wall texts surrounding the vitrine. These told of an obscure European ‘tribe’ of itinerant beggars active in the Middle Ages who worshipped Meteors since they believed that the fallen metal of a meteorite storm would somehow cause an increase in metal coins falling into their begging bowls.

Sculptures included a ‘porringer’ begging bowl (that was indeed cast from meteorite metal); a ceremonial figure; a pair of ‘surgically corrective’ clogs and a gold-leaf covered hearing trumpet manufactured from a shell and a ram’s horn.

A publication in the guise of an academic pamphlet was produced with images of the sculptures accompanying an extended fictional depiction of the Affligare tribe and their living conditions as medieval beggars. See publications for more information.