Collages 9

“Typically when I have hallucinations I’d see a lions head in the background somewhere. Just coming out of the back. I would see quite a few, and I would see the background as spiky, very jagged, very sharp. I would be drawn to trees with their branches and I would see spikes and spiked up objects and that’s why I chose this particular type of background. And so I transposed lots of heads of lions on this background. I photocopied it again so the lions blend in a bit more. The heads would be there, not doing anything, but that would be enough to frighten me. I mean, it would be enough to frighten me previously. These heads are now changing into eyes, which is a bit better. It means that they are not as foreboding as they were before, but at the end of the day l don’t want to see anything.”


“The eyes are just windows. Everything that’s a window seems to be looking at me. So, anything that is round, or has a shape of a window feels like its looking at me. For whatever reason my brain is saying that window is looking at me. It feels like an eye. I don’t look at it directly, I just look away from it. When it was the lions I could literally see lions. Now I see eyes, the windows are transposed into eyes. It feels like they are looking at me. It’s the same sort of thing. When I am in a heightened anxious state and somehow my anxiety is projected onto a building it comes back to me as eyes and mouths. That can also apply indoors if there is an unusual combination of shapes.”


“There is no way I can create what I actually see. The collages are more creative. They are not exactly what I see so I can work on them without feeling that I will flip over. Looking at photos of the actual places is difficult – in the collages I am not actually there – I am creating what I think it would be like if I was there.”

Published by

Alexa Wright

Alexa Wright works with photography, video, sound and interactive digital media. Her practice often exists at the intersection of art and medical science. Alexa’s work has been shown widely, both nationally and internationally. Recent exhibitions include: 'Slippage, The Unstable Nature of Difference', Chester University Gallery (2015); 'Crafting Anatomies', Bonington Gallery, Nottingham (2015); 'Hybrid Bodies', PHI Centre, Montreal (2014); 'Archisle Photography Open', Jersey Arts Centre, St Helier, Jersey (2013); (honorable mention); 'Portas Abertas', Fórum Eugénio de Almeida, Évora, Portugal (2013); 'Digital Aesthetic 3', Harris Museum & Art Gallery, Preston (2012); 'Born in 1987: the Animated Gif', Photographer’s Gallery, London (2012). Alexa is Reader in Photography and Visual Culture at the University of Westminster in London, UK. Her single-authored book, ‘Monstrosity the human monster in visual culture’ was published by IB Tauris in June 2013. Funded by the Arts Council, Alexa is currently artist in residence at two Mental Health Recovery Centres in North London, UK.