The Wandering Womb

The Wandering Womb stuttered into existence on the Remington typewriter as a ‘lyric’ for an audio work. In the research into medical histories of women going back to Aristotle and the Hippocratic corpus, I was constantly confronted with views on the female body as having a faulty part – the womb. According to these sources the womb was a beast that would leap upwards and attack other organs. The language describing this demonic wandering womb was outrageous and on the Remington I typewrote it into rhythmic verse. It became an audio work arranged and sung by Mariske Broeckmeyer which then developed into an idea of the Travelogues of the Wandering Womb. If the womb could not stay in place to procreate, then let her travel!

The second Travelogue of the Wandering Womb, Her Fantastic Encounters and Strange Utterances: To the Copper Mountains is an ongoing work that will eventually have a series of manifestations in Namaqualand, South Africa. Since travel has been impossible in 2020 and 2021 the work is developing vicariously both in exhibition form and as narrative in the Lost Volumes. In 2021 it was a part of the exhibition No One Would Have Believed, Netwerk Aalst. Mariske Broeckmeyer and I created a second audio work, again a quadrophonic piece, this time using both of our voices and introducing the voice of Michele Burgers. The circular bed – giving off the sweete fumes of wild plants like Mugwort, Tansy, Meadowsweet and Melilot that filled its hollow structure – was again at the centre of the installation.