Anatomy Acts Object Guide No.168
Black, White and Shades of Grey, 2006

Christine Borland (b1965)
Courtesy of Lisson Gallery, London
Christine Borland is one of Scotland's most successful and internationally recognised artists, and is currently a research fellow at Glasgow School of Art. Her work is associated with the systems and processes that underpin our society, including forensic science and medicine. Recent work has shown an interest in ethics and the consequences of medical decision making. For this work, the overriding image in reference to anatomy is of branch-like networks, in particular, bronchial structures. When resident at Glenfiddich Distillery in 2004, she became fascinated by the black discolouration of the buildings and trees around the distillery. This was caused by the fungus aspergillus nigrum, produced when the alcohol from the whisky is evaporating off during maturation. Borland links this to the preservation of anatomical and biological specimens in alcohol which also evaporate. The contrast between the black and white saplings registers healthy and pathological specimens, and signals the processes of decay within the body.

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