Ali Hutchinson
lighthouse / Bidston Observatory / strains / sky in the union jack / the care taker / exoskeleton / hope + resolute / rime / chandelier / contact / statement /

Flag from the blue in a union jack umbrella

sky in the union jack
Discarded union jack umbrella, surgical thread, tape, wood
June 2016

Flag repurposed from the blue in a discarded union jack umbrella. Backlit against the sky, tape reconfigures the saltire of the union jack into a new country created by action and light. Nailed to sections of wood for portability the flag is flown at dusk signalling hope, defiance and a new territory.

The broken umbrella repurposed to become a thing of flight and movement, charged and activated by the elements, signals possibility for metamorphosis and change. Both materially and psychically useful objects, an icon of protection and defence becomes one of flight, communication and territory.

Referencing maritime signalling language, an arcane code of flag signals between ships at sea, requiring a key to decipher, I create a signal language without a key, a broken or new form of communication for a parallel world.

Signalling passing ships unseen in an oncoming storm, I develop a new language of ritualised unseen acts, awareness of time and elements and tests of heroism.

Surgical thread alludes to a piecing together, delicacy and strength. Materials are poor, discarded or found, protective boat tar, dog bones, mooring line and rope remaining from a stolen life buoy, symbols of security and protection charged with use and time.