Born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Mary Lemley has taken part in many exhibitions and performance works since her move to Britain in 1984.
Available for the first time only at Hundred Years Editions are the artist’s printer proofs from the highly acclaimed 1992 work These Fragments We have Shored Against Our Ruin.
This work was both a daily performance and site specific installation based on the Thames’ tides and its 14 mostly underground tributaries. 8m cloths were hung at each river location during low tide, and waiting for the tide to return and go out again, their residue offering a brief history of the river. Each cloth was later rehung with the other clothes in an installation at Trinity Wharf, with a large bookwork for each tributary.
The printer proofs are from these large book works, containing three different texts. 1.) A Stream of Words describing the rivers ebb and flow, by the artist 2.) Seven of the alleged “river fragments” of Heraclitus in the Ancient Greek. 3.) A reinterpretation of the Sumerian myth Innana’s Descent to Hell, by the artist.
Each page is printed on both sides with text from the Stream of Words on one side and on the verso. On the verso is either from the Heraclitus (2.) or Inanna’s Descent to Hell.
Edward Woodward’s photo of the completed installation at Trinity Wharf. Press: Observer Aug. 9th 1992, photo Sue Adler, and Time Out; Aug. 26th 1992, Rose Jennings