Ties That Bind At The Water's Edge Installation


Sharon McElroy and Esperanza Perkins' installation
Ties That Bind At The Water's Edge explores
social and gender connections and traditional craft
skills associated with domestic crochet and commercial
fishing environments.

Ties That Bind At The Waters’ Edge is an installation
by Sharon McElroy and Esperanza Perkins that utilizes
the knotting, looping and fastenings found within
domestic crochet and commercial fishing environments
to explore connections between the two contexts. The
piece embodies the artists’ mutual interests in social
and gender connections, traditional craft skills and
practices. The juxtaposition of Perkins’ suspended
crocheted cotton yarn ‘nets’ with McElroy’s silent,
rhythmic film, invites the viewer to re-examine the
formal qualities of a working harbour and to acknowledge
the semi-industrial heritage of its hinterland.
Integrating their methods and use of materials in
this way McElroy and Perkins aim to create a dialogue
between the sculptural and the filmic, with a high-
lighting of pattern, structure, repetition and line
enabling the formation of new narratives within the piece.
The installation also aims to question ideas around
gendered activities by comparing the aesthetics within
‘domestic’, ‘decorative’ and ‘feminine’ traditions with
those perceived to be of an ‘industrial’, ‘functional’
and ‘masculine’ nature.

Sharon McElroy works with moving image and costumed
performance to investigate heritage and site, associated
communities and expressions of individual and group

Esperanza Perkins’ practice uses the traditional craft
skills such as crochet passed down to her through her
maternal grandmother and mother to explore familial

The artists met in 2013 whilst studying on the MA Fine-Art
course at Wimbledon College of Arts, University Of The Arts
London and are currently exploring the potential of sharing
ideas and processes to develop collaborative artworks.
They have recently exhibited collaborative work at Surface
Gallery, Nottingham (2017), A-side B-side Gallery, London (2016)
and hARTslane, London (2016) as well as pursuing their
individual practices.