I have been instructed to speak less of my past, preferably to do away with it, especially when it comes to artistic practice. At first I was excited by the freedom this offered; to be civilised, instead of just cultured. An opportunity to sit within a canon of formalistic forms and formulations – a space in which ‘identity’ no longer functions. Because my past is heavy, it is too much of a burden. Others cannot relate to its particularities, the punctum of its weight.
Hence it may not be clear why I have chosen to install an empty bottle fridge, filled with the sounds of grief, as a degree show piece. The premise of this work is to offer a kind of libation, within a space where the serving and spilling of drinks is forbidden. For I am mourning the death of my neighbour, friend and colleague Khadija Saye; because I cannot be in this space without thinking of her. She was the one who brought me here two years ago, to see a previous version of this degree show and made me promise that I would join her as a prospective student, so as to graduate together in the summer of 2019. Yet I stand here alone today, because a few weeks after that encounter, Khadija was killed in the fire of Grenfell Tower, a blaze that was apparently caused by the faultiness of an immigrant’s fridge.