13Men or Penelope + metamorphoses 1989-94

(altered men’s Suits)


I am interested in clothing as skins, which project outwards as well as inwards. By taking apart the male business suit I try to discover or analyze the "pattern" on which it is constructed. At the same time metamorphosis implies evolutions of suits into something else. The notion of a metamorphosis suggests, that this happens either through nature taking its course or through magic ( or art) I like the mixture of a bit of both.
By taking the suit apart, graphic contours of patterns become visible, the language (the logical structure) of the suit. The pattern for an arm is always similar and recognizable to any pattern maker, tailor or seamstress. I ask myself: what is the difference between the flat pattern, the sleeve, the visible arm and the arm underneath the skin. How do they influence or define each other. There are other ways to make clothing. Complex ideas are held together seamlessly; but in fact, there are seems, which can be undone.
The flattening of the suits interests me and its relation between the structured surface, created by the woven fabric and its layering onto the body. Woven materials are usually grids, particularly industrially produced textiles; some pattern emphasize this. Men's suiting fabrics are complex combinations of different coloured threads, which produce interesting visual effects, but without drawing attention to themselves. Initially I was mainly concerned with rupturing the structures themselves, but it evolved into an overlaying of new patterns onto the old ones.
also read the text or ‘discussion’ with Penelope

Metamorphoses #4: Dark Angel

altered man’s suit, 1992

75 x 57”

13 Men or Penelope II 1989

altered men’s suits, 26 x 3’

Metamorphoses #1: Armour

altered man’s suit, 1990

68 x 62”

a collaborative performance by Ruth Scheuing & March Patch
altered men's suits, electro acoustic sound, image projection, text
Banff Center, Banff, Alta. 1990
Centre Expression, Saint-Hyacinthe, Quebec, 1991
Surrey Art Gallery, Surrey, BC, 1993

Metamorphoses #11: Spider

altered man’s suit, 1993

769 x 65”