Noose

Originally conceived as a work in response to the theme of Empire at the SSA curated show at Wall Projects, Montrose, Noose was initially a site specfic installation work of photograph, rope and chair, which sought to summarise the essense of how empires generally emerge, through control, exercised through the threat and actuality of torture and death, juxtaposted against a setting which itself stands testimont to the inevitablity of decline of human endeavours through encroachment of time and nature. Robertson's research revealed that the  old rope factory (now gallery) was still owned by the same rope making family who had operated it at the height of the British Empire, which led to her commissioning the rope at the centre of the work  directly from the owner.  This was a career first in noose making for a son who reported having watched his father make them to scare his workers and who believed his grandfather may have sold them to the government. The work was shown in July 2015 and coincided with the 50th anniversary of the removal of the death penalty in Scotland and in a year in which the UK government had appointed two cabinet members, one as Justice Minister, who were on record as pro death penalty. 

 

Noose Rendition

Following invitation to reshow the work on a much larger scale at the RSA National Gallery in Dec 2015, the piece was reconceived under the new title, Noose Rendition, with the rope now laying almost hidden, yet no less menacing, in an antique violin case - this new element, underlying the absence of human presence and suggestive of a funeral lament, was intended to introduce a link to the US via a nod to the terror and lawlessness of its 1920s gangsters, with the new title referencing the  first official acknowledgement of the practice of rendition and torture by then US President Obama following the publication of a report in August of that year.