|from Georgia's notebooks|
It's all there. Creativity, obsession, torment, and hope. Drawings, poems, rare books, handmade jewelry, beautiful shoes, prayers of pleading, lists of medication - what she took, when she took it, and more often, when she forgot, and diaries filled with tiny writing in coloured inks. The evidence of her illness is scattered everywhere. Some of the darker poems have been written over and over again. The jewelry is exquisite and nothing short of genius considering she was entirely self taught. I know that she would sometimes stay up all night, often sitting with a tray in the bath, making this stuff. She taught herself everything there was to know about semi precious stones. Then there are all the designer shoes. Stunning, quirky, and far beyond her means. Some were stolen, some were saved up for and afforded by living off protein shakes and cigarettes instead of food. The multiple piles of rare books hints at Georgia's partiality to hoarding. Her apartment groaned under the weight of unread material, looked at once then abandoned in a stack behind the sofa. The writing in her diaries often changes dramatically in appearance, as if more than one person is the author. Most poignant have been the prayers. Georgia was looking desperately for a God she could believe in and feel supported by. Every deed and thought she regretted and documented, was followed by a prayer to stop her doing and thinking these things again, but to no avail. The insanity of repetition is rife.
I did not start off with the idea of including or adding anything personal of Georgia's but I now feel it might be an interesting idea. So I am creating a scrapbook alongside the project. It is the visual story of a bipolar mind. A deluge of extremes. Tragic but also funny. She was the first person to make jokes about her behaviour at the same time as despairing. She once befriended a man with no legs or arms, living on the streets. She wheeled him home and tried to convince her flatmate to let him live with them. Needless to say, it didn't happen. Without being conscious of it, I realize this project is emulating something of the absurd in Georgia's circumstances.
If her life were an artwork then I would say the theme to it was CONVENTION or lack thereof. Time and again she could (or would?) not conform to what people and society expected of her. But imagine if it was possible for a person to live entirely free of others' expectations. Would she have found some other way to torment herself or could she have found peace?