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DESIGNER / Footnotes2khora



Isa Catenaro

Meanjin. Brisbane, QLD

hand-made, ravewear, mythology

Fun fact: "I love collecting glass and crystal receptacles so I currently have at least 25 bottles in my bedroom as display pieces".

q & a

background / edu

I graduated from QUT with a Bachelor of Fine Arts [Visual Arts] in 2021 and have always focussed on reflecting. 

creative process

I work with various handmade lace-making processes but focus on hand-crochet. My process is far more labour intensive than machine-knitting and definitely creates something that reveals traces of the human hand, where the precision of a machine conceals it. Even when I spend more than 100 hours on a piece, I feel like everything I'm doing will be worthwhile because there's no way something like this exists. I use cotton and silk gifted to me from my grandmothers, aunties, next door neighbours or purchase them at antique stores, then I crochet pieces that are so fine and light they fit less within the "knit" category and could more accurately be described as lace fabric or textile. 


The title "ravewear" could be attributed to my work. While I focus on corset lacing details on most pieces, sometimes I like to emphasise complementary colour combinations and textures. I'm really just trying to find a sweet intersection between religious, gothic, faerie, dystopian and Rococo aesthetics. 

general artist statement

My needlework and performance-based installations enact defiance towards the pseudo-dilemma presented by antinomies: piety versus sin, feminine versus masculine, purity versus abjection. Ritualistic anointing and playful purification are enacted through the choreography of communion. Khôra is characterised through representations of the queer body as Christ forsaken: inaugurating transgressive and transcendental narratives that conflate sacraments with the profane. His body and blood are symbolised through salt with aromatic frankincense, myrrh and spikenard. This queer Eucharist exists in states of temporal vicissitude operating within the macroscopic spatiality of scent and focalising the microscopic labour-intensive process of lacemaking. 

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