Caroline Hope

Caroline Hope, Ms Hill at Home, (2020)

Using the lens of the 18 th Century tea table, how can object-making become instrumental in establishing a narrative space in which personal memories and replicated images from two paintings be combined to impart knowledge about the notion of English politeness?

My work is concerned with an exploration of the cultural phenomenon known as English Afternoon Tea and how this relates to my own personal identity. As I laid out found information about one branch of my immediate family, a narrative of lost identity began to emerge that resonates with my study of English tea culture.

Many people take comfort and pleasure in collecting objects, artefacts and archival information and laying it out to create an environment of order and safety. There is a connection between the archive collection and an environment of order and stability. This sense of order provides control and acts as a barrier against the unpredictability and lurking chaos of the outside world, whether past and present.

My work is an examination of the different forms this barrier takes. Altering how these images are presented is a way of questioning the attitudes, agency and unwritten rules that have formed my domestic environment and my behaviour within it.