Ania Walwicz on Trauma/Pre-trauma

simon crosbie

trauma, pre-trauma


Simon gives me instructions. The end of the ride on tram 86 from Bourke St. Docklands, a bike shop,a shopping centre, an escalator to the right and then the Dark Horse Artist’s  Collective.

An installation,a visual text enacting sexual abuse in a primary Catholic school. A threatening and  disruptive show. The assemblage of Ed Keinholtz. A  grouping of symbolic objects.

5 old raincoats from the 60’s hang and swing on coathangers. Dirty old men in sex cinemas, cutting out their pockets from the inside. Sordid and threatening.

Crosbie’s show has that uplifted sense of objects, hanging, swaying, trembling, moving, suspended by hooks, held by shoelace  ropes, tied with knots. The levitation, the ascension of Catholic iconography.

Machine- knitted, black oversized garments, monstrous, stretched jumpers with multiple arms  enact the priest’s soutannes with shiny buttons.  The monstrous octopi extend and sway, approaching the viewer, reach for their prey. They insinuate and posture and gesture.

A territory of theatrical space where the black arms grow longer and longer and longer. They tremble and approach. Stealthy spiders.

Some arms  connect and encase little chairs, encase them, grow into them, cover the hard anality of little stools. This is the act of remembering, a regression.The childhood moment of swaying, destablilization, arrest. What is happening now?What happens to the child?

The black arms sway and multiply and extend in a provocative, leering way.

In the next room, the over-long giant yellow jumper seems light and bright as it extends it’s long, long arms In a trembling, lascivious supplication. The ever-loving, headless deity approaches us stealthily.

This show provokes a primal, visceral response.Two tiny black paintings look us. One has a first communion medal, a sign of a dutiful pledge and it’s recompense- an ascension to the trembling, scintillating, vibrating vortex of traumatic experience.