preserved memories

For this artifact, I chose to represent Mauritius Island through the different smells that I directly related to that location. As a child, visiting the place where my mother was born was an annual tradition. We would get to see our family and enjoy the island’s famous and flavorful creole cuisine. However, as I gradually stopped visiting Mauritius Island, my memory slowly started to fade but the smells I experienced wouldn’t. I gathered the very familiar scents that I related to this place and linked it to each individual that made up my family: paprika for me, sweet tea for my mother, the cumin for my brother, and the bois cheri tea for my father. I represented the idea of conserving this memory by dipping the cut up pieces of my tablecloth (the artifact from my memory) which had been soaking overnight in these spices and teas, into melted paraffin wax. One thing I chose to focus on from the start and really highlight in this sculpture was its shape. My intention was to show all the scents fusing together, scents that were aligned with my family members, to represent the overpowering smells that were constantly present in markets, streets, and in mauricien homes, and to represent the sense of a strong family connection as this yearly visit would bring us closer together.

 

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