Trail tape, nails, dimensions variable, 2020
Inspired by the artist’s 2019 winter residency in Vermont, USA,
Pathfinding repurposes the classic word-search puzzle. The grid of
letters filling the space may initially appear incoherent, but from this
jumble words begin to emerge. Hidden words include those used in
medical terminology, chosen by Bellamy for their significance to her
personal experience of transition.
Each letter is formed by looping and tying fluorescent pink trail tape,
which is scattered through the many hiking trails surrounding the
Vermont Studio Center. Trail tape is used to help hikers stay on
intersecting paths through the forest, and this method of path-finding is
interpreted in Bellamy’s work as an analogy for finding direction through
questioning and exploring gender.
Featuring flourescent pink, Bellamy’s work references the connotations
that come with this colour. It seeks to illuminate and call into question
the politisation of trans-bodies, social expectations of gender-
performativity and the problematic rise of the ‘gender’ reveal stunt.