Open Navigation

Artist Spotlight: Effie Dee

March 20, 2017

We caught up with Effie Dee, the mad genius behind YAH17 installation PlasticScene 17, which will be showing in the Festival Hub Space throughout the festival.

Tell us about the idea of the uncanny valley? What attracts you about working in this space?

The uncanny valley is basically the hypothesis that the more realistic a human replica, like a robot or a doll, becomes the more unsettling and repulsive people find it. I noticed, when I started working with plasticine, that people started to get really unsettled by some of my pieces the more they looked at them. I really enjoy producing works from these absurdly synthetic materials that still make people stop and hesitate, just in case they’re alive.

In the program, you talk about PlasticScene 17 as if it were sentient…what form would its consciousness take? What would it think/feel/believe?

Hmmmm, I feel like 17 is a colonial organism. Thousands of tiny creatures living and working together to survive in hazy ocean of melted peach sorbet and spilled mint juleps. I’m not sure it’s fair to assume that an alien creature has a tangible human concept of belief or thought.

Can you give us insight into the process of creating the work? How did it come together?

I always start all my new works with a collage. It’s the easiest way for me to work on ideas and quickly create a spread of images. For this project I started with collecting textures, and then worked on a colour palette. I knew I wanted to make something immersive and from there it’s just sketching, and samples, and more sketching, until I have enough of an idea to actually start working physically.

I actually made a little blog post on my tragically under maintained website about the initial production of the piece. 

If you were a TV show, what would you be?

Haaaaaaaaahhhhhhhh it’s the X-Files.

Finally, what YAH17 events are you most looking forward to?

The Norah Jones Half Hour, Aerobicide: Feel Better and, of course, the Sublimation Project