Sculptural experiments in form and weight using an archive of family photograph.
Portrait of the Artist Being Alive
2014 Commissioned by Schools and Teachers, Tate London, Learning Poster, 23.39" x 33.11"
Portrait of the Artist Being Alive was commissioned as part of Project Visible - an initiative from the Tate Workshop Programme. This year the project took the form of a series of posters designed by the ten artists on the Programme. Artists were invited to create a work that reflected the processes and thinking behind the workshops they had led that year.
Portrait of the Artist Being Alive records the act of blushing. For my poster I wanted to explore the social space of being together in the gallery with art. How do we appear to each other in public? The work explores the embarrassment, care, compassion, antagonism, rivalry and identification involved in forming relationships with others and art.
The poster form of the project refers to a previous Tate initiative School Prints which ran from 1946-7. This was an ambitious scheme launched at the close of the Second World War bu Brenda Rawnsley, a British arts campaigner and education activist. Aiming to find ‘a means of giving school children access to contemporary art’ she prodiuce prints by artists including Picasso, Lowry and Matisse for the classroom wall.
Project Visible was launched at Tate Modern in October 2014 with an exhibition of the commissioned works, and is also available as a free resource to schools.
Artists involved: Katriona Beales, Harald den Breejen, Evan Ifekoya, Lucy Joyce, Emma McGarry, Rosanna Mclaughlin, Joseph Noonan-Ganley, Elaine Reynolds, Eoghan Ryan, Katharine Tolladay
2012 (C-Type Print: 8.3” x 60” & Single Channel Video: 5.45mins)
Nice is an inventory of sorts. It is a methodical, yet subjective, list of an entire set of holiday pictures - each line is a photograph. The list contains 262 ‘photographs’ and stands at 1.5metres long (or 5.45mins duration).
Flitting between the mundane, the repetitive, the familiar, and the highly personal, the list has a certain anachronistic feel despite its highly methodical, chronological reality - the list never steps out of the time sequence in which the photographs were taken. The result is a particularly experiential narrative, revealing much about the thought process, the physicality, and the subjectivity of photo-taking.
By replacing individual photographs with text, and creating a whole new photographic object - the list - in the process, Nice is also an investigation into the relationship between text and image, andinto the nature of the photograph itself.
The full video version of Nice can be viewed below.
Eat Sleep Rave Repeat
Poster, 23.39" x 33.11"
2013 Site-specific 16mm film installation
Wayfaring draws heavily on the writings of anthropologist Tim Ingold, and in particular, his work on our perception of environments. Wayfaring is the act of travelling/way-making - usually by foot – which we all perform on a daily basis as we go about our lives. In making Wayfaring I was interested in exploring this daily activity as an action of/opportunity for, enhanced perception. In particular I was interested how wayfaring continuously changes our relationship to our environment, both consciously and subconsciously.
Produced at Farringdon Factory, the piece was created over the course of a days wayfaring through the 7-storey empty office block in the City of London. A reel of clear 16mm film was slowly unrolled as I walked through the space, and I used a pen to record impressions, drawings, and for mark-making along the way. I was interested in how the drawn lines would translate on film, and how the act of creating the piece would changed my perception, knowledge and sense of closeness with the building.
The strip of film itself became active in the process of wayfaring, simultaneously directing movement and attention, getting caught on doorways, twisting, or unravelling limply at my feet. Alongside my markings, over the course of the walk the film picked up some additions - dust, debris, fibres - of it’s own.
The resulting projection and installation of Wayfaring returned the film strip, and its components, back into the space. The strip of film was looped up and over the exposed pipe work on the 1st Floor and projected 20 metres ahead onto the back wall - closing a loop of engagement between myself, the film strip and the building.
Muscle Display Performances 1 & 2
2012, Ongoing (C-Type photographs)
Consisting of a series of un-gendered still-life’s of biceps this series explores the peculiarly Western appreciation of musculature.
In particular it questions the concept, popularity and prevalence of the ‘bulging bicep’ in Western visual culture. A popular position of strength and virility, the ‘bulging bicep’ has a vivid visual history from Ancient Greece, through early anatomical imagery, Renaissance art, popular cinema and modern day queer culture. The images themselves incorporate the essence of the statuesque - appropriating the Greek concept of beauty and perfection in relation to the ‘Golden Ratio’, but fit just as well alongside popular queerised body images. The focus is on how the masculinity of muscularity has been fostered through centuries of prior appropriation - this series aims to both challenge and contribute to this.
For Muscle Display Performances 2 I have been asking people, independently and in pairs/small groups, to perform simple physical movements. It’s all about observation and control – bodily control, and control in the sense of power. It’s working with ideas of collective movement, moving in sync, and the physical affect of the presence of one body on another.
Muscle Display Performances 1 and Muscle Display Performances 2, and is part of an ongoing project into muscularity, gender, identity and performance.
Muscle Display Performances 1
Muscle Display Performances 2
Anarchy, Autonomy, Automation...
Artist Adam Walker and I have been working together for more than 3 years on various education projects at Camden Arts Centre, and having developed a new collaborative practice through this, are beginning to explore this collaboration further in new contexts.
In our own practices, each of us is interested in the relationships between individuals and the space that surrounds them; between the person and the environment; between the political and the physical; between behaviour and situation.
In exploring these shared interests through projects like Get The Message, we have developed and shaped a joint practice with quite a specific line of enquiry.
We recently compiled a list of words that begin to define this line of enquiry. We will be using this list to move our collaborative practice forward.
The first three words are Anarchy, Autonomy, Automation...
Other Peoples' Gardens
2009 (Series of 8 C-Type Photographs)
These portraits of 8 adjacent London gardens are the continuation of a search for the ‘social life’ of domestic spaces.
The private garden is so often simply an extension of the private home. However, when that private garden faces onto a public canal, the garden - in particular the end of the garden - becomes an interface. Whether this interface becomes one of detachment, enjoyment practicality or disuse, the combined approaches to dealing with it take on a unique character somewhere between nature, function and sociality.
Other Peoples’ Gardens was published in the art and anthropology journal Art/e/fact in September 2011 along with an extended text. To read the full article click here.
Things That Matter
2010 (Series of 5 C-Type Photographs)
Things That Matter is both a series of object portraits and at the same time a very unique self-portrait. By playing with perceptions of the body, extending/blurring the limits of what we allow to represent or just be a body we continually challenge the basis of subjectivity.
Working with a concept of the body that is not restricted to the human or even ‘living’ form, but is instead open to the intrusion, the partnership and the influence of the non-human, non-living and object ‘bodies’ what is produced is a concept of the body without boundary. A body which is largely ‘immaterial’.
Through this exploration, the definition of what is an ‘object’ and what is a ‘subject’, and what is a ‘person’ and what is a ‘thing’ becomes an exciting subject of contention.