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Monash Art Design & Architecture

EMILY KEAM

Emily Keam
Contusion
2014

A contusion, or bruise in layman’s terms, is a type of hematoma of tissue, in which capillaries and sometimes venules are damaged, usually by blunt force trauma. This impacting trauma allows blood to seep, haemorrhage, or extravasate into the surrounding interstitial tissue. Dependent on trauma, and impact, caused most often through physical compression and deceleration forces, bruises can involve capillaries at a skin level, as well as subcutaneous tissue, and even muscle or bone, in very serious cases.

Acting as an investigation of both science, and its relationship to art, these pieces explore layers, and sequence, and how these processes work in the human body. Inspired by the collection, and the systematic gathering of the seemingly mundane by Mark Dion, these glass works act as a somewhat clinical analysis of a very bodily, and natural experience, that of flesh, and of bruising. Taking the images of things that traditionally make people cringe, or squirm, that create repulsion, or remind the viewer of their own injuries, and aches; but by removing these bruises from their usual context, and instead, emphasising the more clinical and scientific investigation, over the bodily, and fleshy motifs that comes to be expected of the colourings of the bruise, these markings can be appreciated and viewed in quite a different way.

Emily Keam
Contusion
2014

As a variety of hematoma, a bruise is always formed by internal bleedings into interstitial tissues, which does not break through the skin. Bruising can be causes through a wide variety of incidents, from accidents, falls and surgeries. In cases of trauma that is sufficient enough in force to break through the skin and allow blood to escape the tissue, the injury is no longer considered to be a bruise, but is instead, known as bleeding. Though these kinds of injuries are quite often accompanied by bruising, in addition to bleeding.

Emily Keam

Emily Keam

Glass, powdered pigment and stainless steal trolley
100 x 80 x 50 cm (approximately)

Monash University
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