Here are some past works in which I explored similar ideas on the limality of one's inner and outer worlds and our sense of connection. The first is ink on paper and the second is sewn on fabric with ink. 


I am also finding myself drawing quite a lot of circular shapes expanding. These are a common motif in my work that often seems to bubble out of my subconscious. I see them as a type of expanding self/universe. Almost like a mandala but much more energetic – they are not ordered or symmetrical, they convey a blurring and a bleeding of boundaries.


Aspects about mandalas  resonate with me in the fact that they refer to both the macrocosm and the microcosm. The self and the universe. Jung used to draw mandalas incessantly and for him the centre point was the self to which all paths led back to. For me the self is like the universe, constantly evolving.

Here is something I have been experimenting with ink and clear string.

I explored ideas like this in my 'Dissolve' series also it explores times of change or flux where one feels like one's reality is dissipating.

The figure blends in in parts to the background evoking the feeling of oneness that be can felt in states of heightened awareness.


'A human being is a part of the whole called by us universe, a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feeling as something separated from the rest, a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty.'

Albert Einstein


This work was printed on transparent paper. I am drawn to semi transparent materials as a way of expressing the illusion of our perceptions or our capability of being able to see through our current reality.

I have been experimenting with my idea ‘We are all connected by Invisible Threads’. I have been trying out different types of semi transparent papers and plastics and sewing into them with clear thread of which I will post images and a video in the next couple of days.




  1. Ushmita Sahu | 10.20.2017

    It is very interesting to me how you have located the basic concepts of your art lie at the liminality of philosophy and science. You quote Jung a lot, and Einstein in this instance, both of whom were much influenced by Eastern philosophy. The idea of universal experience and essence seems to permeate your practice be it sculpture, performance photography. Do you see yourself crossing over,( if I may be allowed to use that phrase) to the philosophical side, to exploring in-depth the ancient knowledge bases?

    • Kate Mcelroy | 10.23.2017

      Hi Ushmita! Thanks for the response.
      Yes, I would like to continue delving into these topics in more depth and continuing to make connections across different disciplines. The idea of universal experience is definitely something that inspires me and the idea of trying to represent an experience that isn’t usually tangible.

      As you know I am in Nepal at the moment and I am planning on going to India next so I am hoping to get more of a first hand understanding of Eastern philosophy. The way symbolism and metaphor are very much integral to the culture here is very interesting. I feel symbolism is very powerful and is quite intrinsic to us, something that has been used as a form of communication since ancient times. Also our dreams are often littered with symbolism, it seems it a very basic human method of expression. It can be used to great effects to connect us with our inner processes.

      As I have said before I feel like our right brains functions are often neglected in our society eg imagination, intuition, abstract thinking, emotion etc.. I feel like by connecting seemingly disparate disciplines I can show the value of art and experience in a way that connects it to everything around us. These processes are not elusive and unnecessary but compulsory for creating whole and integrated people.

  2. Dengke Chen | 10.19.2017

    Hello Kate,

    I like the pieces you created based on mandalas, and your words regarding self and universe remind me how individuals perceive self and the surrounding (universe). There’s research states that how everyone perceives and interpret the sensation of surrounding and the world is different. For example, one sees blue color as blue might be different than the blue color another person observed through his/her eye. Everyone has unique spirit and thoughts and own perception of the world. “A human being is a part of the whole called by us universe”, but “who is the center” is an interesting and controversial topic to explore. – Dengke

    • Kate Mcelroy | 10.22.2017

      Hello Dengke, thanks for your reply! Yes our past experiences, emotional state, interests etc.. all shape and filter how we perceive the world like you say giving us all a unique outlook on the world. At the same time it is interesting despite this we all seem to experience the same basic emotions happiness, sadness, fear etc..
      ‘Who is the centre’ is an interesting question. I suppose in a way everyone experiences their self as the centre of the universe. As Victoria said ‘Every mind is its own universe.’ Or I like the idea of every mind being a like a world and them all being part of a whole, a universe.

      ‘The big bang wasn’t an explosion of matter into empty space—it was the rapid expansion of space itself. This means that every single point in the universe appears to be at the centre. Think of the universe as an empty balloon with dots on it. Those dots represent clusters of galaxies. As the balloon inflates, every dot moves farther away from every other dot. The space between clusters of galaxies expands, like the rest of the universe, at an accelerating rate.’
      There is no exact centre point, it is the same everywhere so we are all equally the centre of the universe.

  3. Souvik Majumdar | 10.15.2017

    Very interesting ,works. I like the way said about semi transparent materials , i want to ask where i can see good quality image of this works , i want to see in details ,if possible .

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