Situated at the Worldwear shopping centre, this sculpture playfully explores the mall culture of our rapidly developing, globalised society. With a focus on delivering affordable brand centred fashion to the everyday consumer, Worlwear shopping centres house a number of factory outlets and smaller boutique stores.
The shared culture of fashion and consumerism connect mall-goers, the unspoken performance of identity through action and dress, give malls their own, socially specific role. Ramp models, investigates this collective enactment of social identity, and the conscious construction of individual, personal identity. It’s very tongue-in-cheek title suggests that in these spaces, our automatic, haptic and subjective experience of the world shifts to a more self-aware, performance of identity for a perceived audience.
Sites of cultural intersection, people from all walks of society cross paths in malls, and the buzz of activity quite appropriately lends itself to metaphorical parallel with the hive. Three hexagonal ‘cells’ of escalators die away into negative space, suggesting an almost infinite continuation of this hive-like construction. Each escalator and landing is a 21st Century tableaux of bustling shoppers engaged in a variety of actions from kissing and striking casual poses to taking photographs of one another.
Recognising the unsung status of the humble escalator as an iconic symbol of social development, the sculpture extends an intricately engineered arm skyward, breaking the symmetry of the concertina-like modules at its base. Even at the very edge of this lofty landing, the members of this hive-community remain totally engaged in their microcosmic reality, never looking out into ours, so strong is their self-reflexive performance of individual identity.