Sheela-na-Gig aka Jeanne Rathbone


Posted in RECLAIM THE CROSS ART PROJECT by sheelanagigcomedienne on August 25, 2010

As I get so pissed off at having to ask the crematorium staff to remove the cross when I go to my place of work to conduct a funeral ceremony I got the urge to make these crosses as part of my campaign to RECLAIM THE CROSS. Crematoria are usually local authority premises and should NOT be displaying such a religious symbol. I make a crack about them turning me into Dracula. When I took the funeral service for Dave Allen I became aware of how he would have made a sketch of this and had a Humanist celebrant walking into the crem chapel, being confronted by a cross and asking the attendent to remove or cover it with a curtain whilst beginning to develop vampire fangs!

A cross was/is/should be a simple symbol for marking a place but it has been hijacked by Christians as their logo. This logo is, of course, an instrument of torture. Apparently, Jehovah’s Witnesses think your Christian’s main man died on an upright stake.

My RECLAIM THE CROSS ART PROJECT is my artistic response this religious iconography being improperly displayed in public places.

Here are a few of the crosses that I have made from recycled materials- some of my own and some found. They are all put on cardboard from Dave’s wine boxes. I have always been a bit of an eco snob, boasting about using recycled/secondhand stuff. It used to be jumble sales, auction rooms, junk shops now it is mainly charity shops. This awareness about waste, consumerism, rubbish disposal, energy consumption and ecological mayhem is partly an age thing. After all we have been around for long enough to remember life without much technology, packaging, rubbish mountains, lower energy consumption etc.

Ken on blue camoflage backing.

This is a yuletide cross.

A cute hand-knitted doll rescued from a charity shop.

I knitted this one.

My grey scarf and old jewellry.

Purple tartan cross.

A ladybird cross.

I wonder if I could interest Mr Saatchi in my art project. There are plenty more of these in my attic.

My purple feather boa.

Sand from a trip to lovely Goa.

Animal skin present from Thandi from Zimbabwe in the 70s.

Barbie on blue camouflage material from settee.

Red plastic flowers from crem.

Clouds on blue muslin.


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