The story of Lilith, the First Woman, first appeared in ‘The Alphabet of Ben Sira’, a Babylonian commentary on Hebrew mythology. An independent character who chose to leave the confines of the Garden of Eden, Lilith was subsequently demonised in religious superstition. Over time, Lilith’s narrative has endured yet evolved. Her persistent ability to fascinate is evident in her presence as a muse in art and literature. Once reviled, she is now championed as a feminist icon. Lilith represents duality, she is both demon and heroine.
The domestic space that Lilith inhabits is intrinsic to her narrative. In ‘System of Objects’, Jean Baudrillard proposes that objects in the home embody the identity of the owner, that one’s image can be located in individual possessions and the environment they help to create. In order to create an installation that reflects a space that Lilith inhabits, the primary focus of this project has been to examine her numerous manifestations and determine the recurring symbols and codes in her mythology. Lilith’s deep connection with nature, sexuality, Otherness and her powers of transformation are considered.
Lilith is associated with the domestic space, specifically the bedroom. The central element in this installation is made to the dimensions of a single bed. The bronze fruit surrounding it are signifiers of fertility and sexuality while also embodying nature and a connection to the earth. Chain references the incantations found on anti-Lilith objects. Its menace is subverted by irreverent re-working into an innocuous domestic object, a carpet. Lilith’s transformative nature leads to utilising materials that reflect and feed off each other while embodying formal elements of representation. The mirror is a fundamental object in the construction of identity. Multiple lines evoke the snake, the stripe, the ploughed line - while signifying multiple narratives presented in her mythology.