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The IFS newspaper is just going to press – 500 copies will be printed and ‘guerilla distributed’ around galleries, book stores and travel hubs – as far and wide as I can get them.

See the newspaper here: http://www.newspaperclub.com/INDEPENDENTFREESTATE/newspapers/20552-independent-free-state-final-edition

Press Release:

The Independent Free State is a ‘blueprint’, an imaginative possibility, that explores the correspondence between physical and psychical realities. Itis a site for transformation, a place for thinking, dreaming, seeing. The cry for a state of independence is universal, political and deeply personal: it takes courage to try and find your site of freedom, it’s not a safe endeavour.

I reflect on how territory has been re-drawn as I re-draw and ‘whitewash’ as I see fit. It’s a powerful act to re-draw land mass. With a flick of the brush or pen, perhaps hundreds of square miles of territory has been eradicated. Oceans wiped out. Mountains obliterated. Whole communities, cultures, war zones are reduced to colour, tone and contour. Isn’t this how those in power have always thought of the map – regardless of what lives may exist there – take a pencil and re-draw a border where one did not previously exist?

The figures are not quite human, they are human-objects: simulacrum. But they are female.  Female ownership of land, property, children, of her own body is a modern concept: territory of her own. Though her body has always been ‘of the land’ – a place of discovery and endeavour, an unknown territory to be taken, a place to ‘stake your claim’.

Here, map and female form have become one. They’ve synchronized and melded, each transforming the other. You could call this feminization of the map. Her territory: occupied territory. The map’s flesh-toned urban sprawl becomes her. Drawn images incorporate the contours, roads, railways and edges of the land  – seeking out drawings that already exist.

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At the same time, a new billboard poster will be on display on the Blackfriar’s Road in London just south of the river near Tate Modern for the month of August. It will be a back-lit installation and I hope, highly visible, in a prime location for the duration of the Olympics, when the eyes of the world’s media will be on London.

The Independent Free State lives on.

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