The Skinny Showcase: Rachel Maclean

Rosamund West | 03 Feb 2009

Rachel Maclean

This month The Skinny Showcase presents Rachel MacLean, who is in her final year at ECA. We first saw her work at Keep Calm and Carry On in the vaults of Edinburgh's Cowgate and were collectively entranced. Skillfully edited technicolor videos blending humour and horror playing out in the dank dark surrounds of haunted Niddrie St were a sight to remember. Rachel describes her practice thus:

"My work slips inside and outside of history and into imagined futures, presenting a hyper-glowing, artificially saturated surface that is both nauseatingly positive and cheerfully grotesque. A synthetic visceral, edible space in which Mary Queen of Scots dines with the 'it' girls of Sex and the City, Sea Creatures swim with acrylic finger nails and 'Neds' dance around a sausage Stonehenge. My videos stylistically unify the aesthetic of The Edinburgh Bargain Store, Hieronymus Bosch and High Renaissance painting with MTV style green screening and channel changing cuts. I use my own body as a platform for constructing alternative personas that can then be cloned, mutated, objectified, worshiped and murdered at will. inspired by the Britney Spears head shaving, I am interested in the moment at which constructed identity throws its self up and tips into its opposite. The instant of self-consumption, when the signature white smile of the teen pop sensation begins to hungrily gnaw at its own image."

You can see her videos here or live at This Is Music in Sneaky Pete's on Friday 13 February and COME in the Bongo Club on Friday 18th.