I Said No… Despite My Sparkly Dress (2019)
polymer clay and glitter on panel
8 x 8 in.
While whispers and shouts of longing for human touch fill my social media, I am on the other side of this, touched out, mothering 24/7. The beautiful touch of my daughter’s hands turns to the sharp claws of (pretend) tigers, the hard stomp of (pretend) elephants, the abrupt bonk of (pretend) race cars. She whizzes back and forth in this small space, “play with me, play with me!” and we do… between filming classes and editing and emailing and zooming and maybe fitting in some art-making. At night, when she’s asleep, I mush clay in my hands. It’s therapy. It’s art. It gives time to let thoughts come in and out. Somehow early motherhood has re-opened past traumas. Perhaps the physicality of it, giving my body entirely to someone else, often uncomfortably, forced my body to remember being taken, unwilling. This time of so much loss, of so much disregard by some also opens those wounds. The materiality of the clay soothes.
© Rebecca Potts