Rhonda Weppler and Trevor Mahovsky
The Pool in the Shell

2 March to 8 April 2023


A pool shell is the encasing structure of a pool that confines its water and supports its swimmers. A pool is a small area of still water lying on the ground or another surface. A pool in the shell suggests the predicate: a pooling, an accumulation of parts, merging, uniting, and combining of two or more things. The shell becomes a temporary mould for the pooling in which the pool forms to the characteristics of its shell. A visual description of both forms (pool shell and pool in the shell) would be similar. A description of their purpose and presentation would be complimentary, as they are not copies of each other but rather a transference of material qualities and energies. A watercolour tray is a set of shells in which water and pigment pool together. A mirror in a compact alludes to the pool in which Narcissus sees his reflection. A pooling of patina chemicals is found in the grooves of copper foil shells. The pool in the shell fulfills the task of self-depiction.

Idle hands would be defined as hands that are doing nothing but nothing, avoiding, resting, pausing, and loafing are all active positions. Idle hands in the studio could be defined as acts of looking and reflecting, working ourselves up, coming up with new ideas, being bored, and letting thoughts wander. It can also be defined as unproductive labour which can be exhaustive; an idling of what makes artists money or being easily rationalized. A visual depiction of idle hands can be an ironic monument to labour and like all monuments, an exaggeration; a cartoon both sarcastic and earnest. The task of depicting idle hands is both myth making and extremely accurate. A tenuous relief sculpture made from impressions of studio tools presented hung on the wall just as they do in real life is an indexical way to document labour and tools of labour, process and time. Idle hands are busy working hard.