Jocelyn Purdie


01 July- 01 December 2001

The first Swamp Ward Window Project, Carapace, was an installation by Jocelyn Purdie. The artist used uncarded sheep wool to coat the interior walls, ceiling and windows of the site.  Informed by the domestic nature of the location, the work evokes security and comfort, fragility and vulnerability, making a reference to the layers of meaning associated with the notion of the home.


27 February – 18 April, 2010

Passing was inspired by a visit to Il Cimitero di San Michele during a trip to Venice in the summer of 2009. Il Cimitero is the city’s cemetery and was established on San Michele under Napoleon.  It contains the graves of thousands of ordinary Venetians as well as several celebrated individuals.

Located on one of the many small islands just off the mainland, it is a peaceful cypress-treed refuge from the tourist mecca that is Venice.  From any vantage point inside the gates, one looks out on a sea of graves decorated with an assortment of cloth flowersPassing suggests that vista and, in juxtaposition with a city that is under threat of demise from rising tides and sinking foundations, reflects on loss and impermanence and the symbolic gesture of placing flowers to celebrate a place or presence in much the same way that the home marks a specific place in the neighbourhhood.


Jocelyn Purdie is a Kingston artist, curator of the Swamp Ward Window and Director of the Union Gallery. She has participated in several solo and groups exhibitions since the late 1980s. She has a keen interest in public art particularly contemporary art practices that engage with the public realm as well as those that function in private spaces with public access. Her interest in these issues lead to the creation of the Swamp Ward Window as a new platform for contemporary visual and media art installations and interventions.