Artist: Mary-Audrey Ramirez
Exhibition title: BKEEPR`s Garden
Venue: beacon, Munich, Germany
Date: November 27, 2021 – January 15, 2022
Photography: all images copyright and courtesy of the artist and beacon, Munich
Mary-Audrey Ramirez, also known as meehrie or m33hr13, is born for the 11th time. Straight into the welcoming arms of an odd purple species that may be a mutation of amethyst deceivers, whose gills have outgrown and formed into spike-tailed tentacles, thereby giving them the look of invasive Cthulhu-shaped weeds.
Straight into the welcoming arms
Of the amethyst deceivers…
…in deciduous woodlands somewhere in the Outer Hebrides. The species appear to grow in groups, within a bigger formation of a garden of sorts. A formation that is placed in the middle of a scared site – most likely the Callanish Stones – now buried deep in the dark woods, rather than standing on a low ridge. Mary wonders for a moment about her previous life. She suddenly vaguely remembers her death; lobotomy, beheading, perhaps trepanning, but she cannot be sure… As she is crawling out of the soft appendages of the aubergine-coloured living being, she touches her head to discover a burr hole in the middle of her skull. That explains it then… of course, it was that “emergency surgery” after a dragon hunting accident, but maybe that was not the real reason behind her trepanation, since everyone in the village called her a Possessed Horse Girl. How funny.
She checks her pockets; the piece of her skull bone is still there, a charm to keep evil spirits away. “Good, this will come in handy”, she thinks to herself.
Mary has looked around. Any stone circle is an enigma not easily solved with traditional methods. The latitude of the place she finds herself in is close to that at which the moon at its extreme declination remains hidden just below the southern horizon. Every nineteen years, at Callanish the moon appears just to skim the horizon. It is also where one can witness the Na Fir-Chlis, the Northern Lights. The spot used to mark a place of pilgrimage, a place where one would soothe the troubles of the mind, where fantastically ingenious druidical machines were used as landscape images of the sun, moon, seasons and elements. Way back when humanity was able to live in harmony with nature and follow the rhythm of the planet, when the stones and the woods and all creatures were full of magical potential. Not any more, the sacred habitat has turned into something cold, dry and diabolical. Nothing good has survived. The land is poisoned.
Mary is darkly, auspiciously scanning all elements of the environment, carefully figuring out her next move. All around her an assembly of extraterrestrial feral critters and bigger, seemingly motionless, matroid-like beings or objects. She is trying to figure out how these creatures got here and whether any of them can pose a threat. They certainly don’t belong here… and they aren’t benevolent daemons. Mary cannot help but think that some of the black holographic constellations look like hobby horses or the Horsehead Nebula, a small dark nebula caused by thick galactic dust in the constellation Orion, first recorded in 1888 by Scottish astronomer Williamina Fleming. Mary is wondering whether these are in fact weapons, are they used by the critters? She remembers that in one of her previous lives she used her hobby horse as a weapon. It appeared to possess a living quality when used as a hammer for more heavy-duty tasks, tough enemies. How frustrating though… that in every life she had, every world she landed in, she was only given ‘cute’ and ‘feminine’ objects. Apparently, it is what girls used to get to complete their missions: dolls, teapots, pretty dresses, embroidery. But things have changed…
Mary has mastered all these objects as weapons, she went beyond relatively cautious magic and alchemical hermeticism. With a faint smile on her face, she is recalling mastering Janome Horizon Memory Craft 14000. Not many realise what an embroidery machine can do. You can take a piece of canvas and at a fast speed embroider any scenario that then takes place in real life. Magically. When the needle touches the linen, it is already under Mary’s spell. She moves fast, with confidence, relentlessly. The process is hard, violent and brutal, the sound – a distorted, industrial rhythm of a machine gun – all so far detached from the domestic activity of embroidery. Often, Mary would be on a path of destruction. She has previously summoned Qi the Cat to fight some of the most beastly snakes, Cthulhus and vultures. There were a couple of moments when she had no choice but to end the mission, so she simply created a scene of her own beheading… but that one went wrong and ended up in being trepanned instead…
The critters around Mary are starting to get agitated. Black and silver, slimey blood has started oozing out of the creatures. Mary stands unflinchingly, but she’s seen far worse. What strange worlds await her inside the slime – this peculiar substance in-between states – a Sartrean onto-logical crisis. The disgust and horror of a world that is stuck in-between worlds. The metallic goo is dripping over the the Horsehead Nebula’s prismatic skin. Mary tried to investigate the haptic physical universe many times, yet the human materiality always disappoints. Only the ones who are prepared to question the rules of the physical universe understand. They bury their fingers inside the slime or the prism and they know immediately where it leads to – it reveals marvels and horrors of the outer world. Mary is submerging her hand deeper into the Horsehead Nebula’s skin, it reveals a portal to a nearby loch. The water is like a mirror, but black as jet, from its depth and from the shadow of the high cliffs which overhang it. She is pleased she found a gateway, but her work is not yet complete.
The large black critter is giving birth… Mary is staying out of sight. In the immediate neighbourhood two yellow beekeeping vests are decaying on the tree. One may only assume that the BKEEPRs had something to do with how this world has turned out. They were just small pawns in the game though. The war started with the land enclosures, escalated during the Agrarian Revolution and led to the Industrial Revolution. We traversed from animism, earth magic, worship of ancestor gods, selkies and changelings to land division, mass deforestation, an overall destruction of the environment and its magical creatures, and… the sad centralised form of faith. They also killed all the healers and all the witches. The BKEEPRs partook in this metabolic rift, they somehow initiated the conspicuous – evil in fact – forms of interaction between the species that Mary is facing. They overstimulated breeding for their own gain, attempting to breed the largest, most fertile queen bee, they weaponised all the virgins. Their bees bred murderous hornets who then bred the critters, and their lilac flowers have turned into these wicked amethyst deceiver weeds.
Mary is slowly beginning to remember that in one of her previous lives, she might have used her newly obtained power and exploded the BKEEPRs by just looking at them. If only she could find her Janome Horizon Memory Craft 14000 she could perhaps restitch the mess they have created.
She takes the piece of her skull bone out of her pocket, buries it in the middle of the stone circle. Now she has to wait for the full moon. Mary knows already what the bone will breed. In the meantime, she will see what she can find by the loch. So, she penetrates through the prismatic surface of the Horsehead Nebula and slides through the slime to the other side.
Here is a garden upon garden of
Stone circles upon stone circles
Lochs upon lochs
Magic upon magic
Beyond the great, bloody, bruised and silent veil of this world.