Block Screen, 2008 – 2010
Sasha Sykes created this screen as a reinterpretation of Irish designer Eileen Gray’s block screens. Using materials and processes which she spent the last decade developing, the screen’s concept came from a mixture of design traditions, art, philosophy, travel and the daily experience of her native Carlow. Whilst in Berlin the theme of torn-down walls and the role of walls throughout history fascinated her. The estate wall near the entrance of Sykes’s home inspired the use of the organic material, which she sourced locally. The screen is a type of wall. However Sykes challenges the notion of privacy by creating a transparent screen. In this way Sykes deliberately kept the organic material dense at the base, making the screen progressively lighter towards the top. Made from acrylic the screen incorporates, woodland debris at the base, then grasses, mosses, mushrooms, cones, leaves and lichens appear. Ferns, brambles and ivy hang down over the top. Hints of life appear throughout the screen in the form of eggs shells, feathers and butterflies. A UV barrier in the resin protects the colours of the organic material. The process of embedding the material in the resin took nearly a year. The resin bricks are stacked and threaded with a steel bar from top to bottom.
Materials: Acrylic resin, organic materials
Year purchased: 2010
Location: Reconstructed Rooms: Four Centuries of Furnishings gallery