From British daily The Morning Star:
A strike baby on a mission
(Monday 29 January 2007)
INTERVIEW: Rachel Horne
PURE MINING STOCK: Yorkshire artist Rachel Horne’s Maggie Thatcher Wicked Witch.
Judith Amanthis meets RACHEL HORNE, an artist whose work is aimed at keeping the rich history of mining communities alive.
RACHEL Horne appears to be unassuming. In fact, she has the lightness of touch that goes with extremely serious work.
Horne was born in 1984, the year of the great miners’ strike, in the mining village of Conisbrough, near Doncaster.
Her ancestors had worked down the local mines for generations.
“We found a newspaper article from 1883 with a photo of my great great grandfather saying: ’50 years in the mine.’
I think it was his 60th birthday. So, I’m pure mining stock all the way.”
Then, in 1986, Cadeby Main Colliery was closed and her father lost his job.
Horne says: “They put a notice up. ‘Anyone wishing to take redundancy may do so at any age.’
He was a skilled coal cutter. He’d been in mining 30 years.”
She recalls how her mother brought up her and her three sisters in the aftermath of the closure.
“Sometimes, we’d have no electricity at weekends and stuff and the gas’d be low.
I’ve got this one memory of my mum making toast on the one ring on the oven that worked … and not really questioning it.
She’d be standing there with this fork and the toast on the end.”
Her art – photography, collage, drawings, installations and videos, which she characterises collectively as assemblage – is biographical rather than just autobiographical.
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