Wilma Cruise Hys. Susp. (2001) | Art.co.za | Art in South Africa
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Hys. Susp. (2001) | Millennium Gallery Pretoria

Three life-size torsos are suspended from the ceiling of a small enclosed space. The partial bodies are twisted in a state of (suspended) hysteria. Text offering definitions of "hysteria: and "suspended" (hung somewhere between above and below) is written on the darkened walls of the room. A subliminal audio track completes the installation.

The middle class Victorian woman had few options in an anally suppressive society to express herself. She was socially conditioned to stifle her emotions, especially that of anger. She was forced to function emotionally below the surface of a formal (and effete) patina of appearance. The suite of works that make up Hysteria Suspended is about hysteria (held in abeyance), dementia and melancholy. (Wilma Cruise 2001)

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