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Published: 11 August 2018

By Andy Ross

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Mary Kelly and the art of lint

An exhibition at Pallant House in Chichester is inspired by the writing of Virginia Woolf. One of the pieces on display is particularly intriguing...

The exhibition features work by 80 women and spans 1854 to today. One of the items is an art work by Mary Kelly, an American artist who works with lint, those pesky little bits of fluff that come from clothes in a dryer. 

Mary takes the filter from the dryer and, using adhesive stencils, draws images which make political comment and applies them to the filter. As the dryer does its job the filter traps the lint and a picture appears. 

In this piece How to use the shelter as a table Mary used a Morrison bomb shelter diagram (for those who do not know what that is here is a link with a picture of these World War Two shelters) as the basis for the artwork. Mary Kelly's lint pieces make comment on the role of women, domesticity and the possibility of global catastrophe and you can see more of the American artist's work here.  The artist has used the concept of bomb shelters in her work before - take a look at Habitus to see how. 

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