First Love

A companion work to Last Rites, First Love has two components. The first is a series of photographs which capture different people’s ideas about what that moment might be like. These are subjective responses to the question “how do you visualise what happens at the moment of conception?” They vary from ‘fish’, ‘fireworks’, ‘an egg’ (with a hard shell) or saying ‘no-no!’, to ‘flowers’ and ‘a sticky mess’. These were then re-interpreted visually in the hazy, sugary coloured effect of early digital video and photography to mirror people’s hazy ideas about one of the most important events in our lives.

The second component is a series of 35 intra uterine devices or coils which have all been used. We estimate that between them they have prevented at least 200 conceptions from occurring. They work by inhibiting the sperm which are trying to fertilise the released egg. They also prevent any of the eggs that do get fertilised from implanting and growing in the womb. The coils therefore operate at a number of stages in the process of conception.

First Love was originally presented as Recoil in 2000