Aislinn O’Donnell is drawn to gentle, contemplative and intimate practices of drawing, forms of mark-making that communicate something of ‘the least of things’; the unnoticed, forgotten, invisible, material dimensions of everyday life. This evokes both our ancient origins and the non-human lineages and filiations that are part of our earthly existence.
An embodied poetic imaginary is first cultivated through material, existential and poetic exercises that open attention, preparing it for surprise, wonder, and humility. Sensitising sensibility also involves deepening the feeling for the archaeologies of the mineral, fungal, and vegetal dimensions of our embodied existence, and the rhizomatic alliances we living beings form. Yet, the ambivalence born of vulnerability remains: all beings, including at an intra-cellular level can undo us or sustain us.
She calls to the ancestors from the first tetrapods with their invisible radial digits and their dual respiratory system of lung and gills, invoking the archetypal images of mitochondrial Eve and LUCA, the last universal common ancestor, to de-centre the human and deepen a sense of being in the world.
Ancient Beings in Everyday Life