On a rainy day visit to Tate St Ives we were surrounded by the colours of wishes from hundreds of strangers and allowed our own quiet hopes to be taken by the wind.
Tate St Ives has always been a favourite place, long before I was lucky enough to move to Cornwall. So on a rainy day, with my husband Will and our friend Rob (Supermundane), we set off to see the new 'Images Moving Out Onto Space' exhibition. There was much to like - not least the amazing collection of Bridget Riley works, intriguing kinetic sculptures by Liliane Lijn and iconic light installation by Dan Flavin. What really captured my imagination however was the installation by Brazilian artist Rivane Neuenschwander.
I Wish Your Wish invites visitors to take a coloured ribbon bearing the hope, dream or yearning of another (in this case taken from local residents of St Ives) and to replace it with their own. The Installation has toured many locations and the artist says that "wishes left by visitors in Lebanon can be very distinct from those of children on Australia, or of Spanish teenagers living through an economic crisis."
Some of the wishes were sweet, some wise or funny, some perhaps a little banal and others were heartbreaking. There was something about being in a space, surrounded by wishes, that felt very connected and very human. I found the experience extremely moving. We took our ribbons and tied them twice. Rob and Will both laughed, they had selected a wish for 'an easy death'. The wish I chose is a secret. It was unknotted by the wind, which means it will come true.
Image: Rob at 'I Wish Your Wish' by Rivane Neuenschwander. Photography by Josie Ballin
Words: Josie Ballin