Wine stained veil with the imprint of a woman’s face, 3ft x 2.7ft. Graphite drawing, 4ft x 3.7ft. 2016.
Veronica, Fallen, is my subversion of the Christian relic ‘The Veronica’, a veil that is said to portray an image of the face of Jesus after Saint Veronica wiped off his blood and sweat on her veil. My veil does not portray the face of Jesus, rather the face of a woman peers through. The stain on the silk was created through a solitary performance in which I placed the silk upon my face then painted my skin with red wine. The result was a stain of wine with a very faint indication through faint colour difference and creasing of my features. The red wine indicates the blood of Christ, however recontextualized as a feminine symbol for seduction, sin and the abject body. By subverting the face of Jesus with the wine stained face of ‘Veronica’, the veil now embraces the fallen woman. The fallen woman is unashamed in her bodily stain upon white silk, challenging purity and modesty while asserting her independence and unashamed presence of sexuality.
Accompanying this artifact is a drawing of the veil with a face emerging more prominently within the stained silk. This act of representing the artifact as a drawing further mythologizes the object, as The Veronica only survives within representations today that amplify its mystery and ideological value within Christian theology. The face emerges more prominently in the representation than it does in the original object, highlighting how the ‘truth’ of such holy artifacts often become stretched when transposed into representation. By amplifying the mythology of my veil of a fallen woman the qualities of the original artifact that exist within an in between state of neither true nor false are highlighted. As well, the emerging face breaks free from categorization, luring with the beauty of the image yet ultimately resisting the image all together.