Exhibitions: Little Secrets, 2014


…. The place in us we retreat to, the place where we hide without being seen by others, the refuge we seek when we are afraid, and the dark sanctum that makes lies possible, but also daydreams and reveries and bad thoughts and intense internal dialogues.[1]


We all have an inner core that we don’t reveal, even to those we are most intimate with. Little secrets that we keep to ourselves.  Mental landscapes inaccessible to others.

Little Secrets is a progression of Patricia Casey’s interest in interior worlds and intimate spaces.  Her subjects are caught in a moment of private reverie, veiled by elements of the natural world.  The familiar is manipulated and transformed into a dreamlike tableau.

There are layers of ambiguity in these works, as beauty is contrasted with unease.  We are uncertain as to whether the subjects gaze is inward or outward; they are the watched or the watching; hidden or revealed.

Little Secrets is comprised of photographic  montages embroidered with glittering threads that act as a flow of energy vibrating from the surface of the picture plane hinting at what may lie beneath the surface of these dreamlike images.  Casey’s stitching is a form of drawing that traces the shapes and forms that are repeated throughout the natural world.  Denuded branches evoke the human circulatory system.  French knots and back stitch reference synapses within the brain.

Casey’s work makes reference to the historical tradition of memento mori in which a lock of human hair, embroidery, fabric, or ribbon are used to decorate the frame or surface area around a treasured photograph, thus transforming  the image from a documentary tool into a vehicle of the imagination.



[1] Hustvedt, Siri, The Shaking Woman