Gifts for gods
Volk Gallery

Volk Gallery is a repurposed nappy vending machine, hung in the Keillor Centre shopping centre in Dundee. A rotation of products are dispensed at a set price of £3 each. Each Volk artists is given a size limit and a budget and left to their own devices.

Gifts for gods takes as a starting point the ancient practice of making and exchanging ‘anatomical votives’ – small, powerful clay scuptures designed to fit in the hand. I’ve used the ancient method of production – casting in terracotta clay – to make an edition of 50 votives across five original designs: mouth, eye, ear, hands and womb.

In the territories of ancient Greece and Rome unwell citizens visiting a healing sanctuary or temple, might buy a small model of a human body part from a roadside vendor to leave as an offering to the gods as part of a prayer. Archeologists have found huge stashes of these ‘anatomical votives’ at pre-Christian religious sites, but exactly how they were used by the individuals who first handled them remains a mystery. You might gift an ear to cure deafness or because you want people to listen to you...

Visitors were invited to pick one up for £3 and make a wish.