I’m a bit of a collector, especially with broken objects. I get an urge to bring them home and fix them in my own way. One day I found this broken Ikea stool on the street so I took it back to the studio. With only three legs, it had become something else, something more than an Ikea stool; you couldn’t sit on it, so it was free from human use. It looked different to its mass-produced friends.
It sat on my work table for a few weeks, until one day I collected a few mop heads while wandering around a living-goods store in Peckham. I chucked them on the stool when I got back to the studio, since I didn’t have much space at that time.
The combination of the mops and the stool immediately reminded me of a moment from my childhood: my family’s housekeeper would always sweep the floor while I was sitting on a stool watching TV. She would ask me to lift up my legs so she could clean the floor, and then she would clean the mop with the running tap water.
We all called her Mo Mo. She came from a very poor region of China, and she’s a very hardworking and generous woman. This piece was called MoMo as part of a collection of work called currently nowhere (now here).
I have since used it during a performance, and it’s now called Sit down. During the performance, I first try to organize and tidy up the thread carefully, as I try to sort my thoughts and memories. I did not sit on the stool, but I let it sit on my face, my body. The stool is no longer a tool or item of furniture, it has become an object that carries my past and stories.
Kelly Fung is exhibiting at Joff + Ollie Studio as part of the UKYA City Takeover, taking place Thursday 7 - Wednesday 13 February.