In July 2016 I presented the work 'All Due Restraint' as a part of a series of shows called '1000 Forms of Fear' at AEAF 24:7.
"SALA Festival finalist Jess Taylor is an emerging Adelaide artist who has always been fascinated by violent imagery. The first in a series of three, 1000 Forms of Fear - All Due Restraint is Taylor’s most ambitious installation of 3D printed works to date, featuring fifty 3D-printed figurines. As with much of her practice, casting herself in the starring role she is simultaneously the tormented and the torturer. Armed with axes, spears, knives and even a chainsaw, the artist does battle with herself. A tiny tribe of anti-heroines create carnage in the parlour without spilling a single drop of blood.
Taking many cues from the visual language of cinema, the artist unsurprisingly cites the Texas Chainsaw Massacre as a seminal influence. Taylor sees herself particularly as the figure at the back right corner of the table holding a chainsaw, a weapon she says “is both fearsome and ridiculous, a reoccurring horror weapon that probably wouldn’t be all that useful”.
Connected to her love of toys and role-play, the artist says “these objects capture our great capacity for make-believe and our tendency to project ourselves and our anxieties onto objects and the world around us.” The artist imagines her audience engaging with the work, moving the models around and implicating themselves in their interaction. We’re not sure whether to recoil or laugh, which is exactly the point. In Taylor’s words “there is such fun in being afraid.”