27 January - December 2014
photo: Ellen Montelius
Letters Home has been inspired by the extraordinary Horsmonden War Memorial still sited in the Horsmonden Social Club. Dedicated to the fallen of the First and Second World Wars it features original photographs, names and all ranks of those from the village who gave their lives. Drawn to the memorial, Caitlin Heffernan sought out links to those who appear on it. Her work weaves together the narratives of the soldiers that fought in the First World War and their families waiting back in Horsmonden. Through excerpts from diaries, letters, poems and keepsakes Letters Home reflects the daily experiences of the soldiers, the food they ate, the conditions in which they lived and their thoughts of home. The artist’s responses can be found amongst the familiar and everyday objects in the village pub and social club, spaces which the soldiers would have inhabited. Through Heffernan’s work, these almost silent voices can at once be heard and not heard, perhaps echoing their silent faces on the memorial, and enabling us to consider the impact of their loss on the village of Horsmonden.
Heffernan uses, adapts and transforms domestic objects to create sculptural forms that are inspired by a variety of elements drawn from personal and social histories. Her work has been exhibited at National Trust properties The Vyne and Nymans, Oriel House Gallery, Riverside Studios and the Whitstable Biennale.
Letters Home can be seen at Gun and Spitroast Pub and Horsmonden Social Club, The Green, Horsmonden, Kent.