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Georgina Glass: 395 kilometres, 2020, knitted cotton, beads, fabric, and mylar


The intention of this work is to document an aspect of life during the global Covid 19 pandemic. The work is located during the initial level 5 lockdown in South Africa, leading to students around the country returning home to live with their parents if they were able to. And the closing of provincial borders. This time of self isolation catalyzed a move to the internet as a space to meet and maintain connections. This work seeks to express the frustration of trying to connect virtually with poor signal, of trying to have any sort of meaningful interaction when you cannot make yourself heard. Text messages or email became the relied upon method of communicating with lecturers and loved ones, but text presents a difficulty. Language is fallible, and easily falls prey to misinterpretation. It soon became clear that nuance of tone and physical touch are important when communicating.


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The sculpture takes the form of a tin can telephone, with knit receivers and a 40 metre cable making it impossible to make taut. This renders the telephone unusable, but if it is picked up the embroidered text inside the receiver mimics circling, one-sided small talk. Each receiver is lined with mylar and will crackle when held to the ear, mimicking bad signal.



glass portrait


Georgina Glass (b.1996) works with textile predominantly in her works. She is based in Pretoria, South Africa. She uses needlework to create tactile surfaces that are intended to be interacted with. Her work draws from archives of collective memory and personal experience to document in traditionally feminine mediums. Her work explores themes of isolation, feminism, language, and memory. She is currently studying for a master’s degree at the University of Pretoria.