Copyright © 2011, Kate Elliott.

Urination Liberation


By referring to recently introduced gender-neutral toilets, Urination Liberation (2009) challenges the ways in which gender stereotypes, such as the ubiquitous signage for single sex bathrooms, have become symptomatic of rigid segregation. As a single stream of liquid falls onto the white surface of the paper, the hand-painted figures merge together and wash away, unsettling the constitutional divide between male and female.

A live piano recording of Johannes Sebastian Bach’s Air on a G String provides the soundtrack for the video. The rawness of the piano, teamed with the distant sound of the liquid as it disappears from the screen, makes allusions to memories of childhood, melancholia, nostalgia and human vulnerability. The raw aesthetic of the video references the experimental avant-garde film-making of the 1960s and 70s, and its relation to the Feminist movement which expressed the strong conviction that identity is not authentic but rather a construct of society.

This work aims to raise questions about the fluidity of gender identity and challenge the viewer’s reading of gender categorisation within a contemporary and prosaic context.

Single channel video with sound.