The Red Archive

In November 2010, as I wandered through Paris photographing people wearing hats, looking for the woman in the red beret, I began to wonder why I had become mildly obsessed with red; what did I think it said about a person, about me?

It was suggested that in light of this fascination, I should photograph everything red that I saw; it seemed to me that if I was interested in the meanings of objects, it should be everything red that I owned.

This project drew together several preoccupations; performance of identity, and specifically gender; notions of the photograph-as-document, and as the project progressed, of the camera as means of inquiry. This in turn kindled an interest in the traditional role of archives as a signifier of power and authority.

In June 2011, for my third year degree show at MMU, I will produce an exhibition drawn from archive materials, entitled I’ll Show You Mine.

I’ll Show You Mine is dedicated to the memory of Leonora Carrington, who died recently; she was the first female artist with whose work I connected viscerally – her wild horses dragged me onto the path that led me towards becoming an artist.

Kate Appleby, May 2011.