Having a Domestic
In line with Set Woolwich open day, myself and Stanley Black curated a pop up exhibit of both of our work. Both of us uses found objects in our work, this creates a domestic feel. While there was many themes in this exhibit, the strongest one was the working class. Within our works we show a pride of our classness, even though this tends to be rejected in the media.
For their eighth show Uncovered Collective presented Vertical Merger. This exhibition showcased over 30 artists in a former office block that once housed Greenwich Council and HMRC. Exhibiting a wide range of mediums, each artist responded to the setting through material and theme.
Taken from Co-Curation website -
In these hard times of isolation, economic crisis and social distancing our home has become a symbol of safety and comfort for so many. Distanced Domestic aims to explore our shared experiences in domesticity during social isolation. We ask that artists respond to existing ideas of domestic labour and feminist economics, the impact of Covid-19 on young families, children or a shift in our perspectives on our roles in a domestic space.
The reality of staying home for many women, families and children are not as comfortable as we would hope. Our new routine further highlights the inequalities in domestic labor and women’s issues that take place behind closed doors. During the first 11 weeks of lockdown from 24th March 2020, domestic abuse calls rose 11.4% in comparison to 2019. Over 45,000 calls were made during that period. (The Guardian)
Male victims of abuse also called for help in greater numbers, the Men's Advice Line seeing calls rise 35% in the first week of lockdown. (The BBC) Homes have never been a place of rest but of unpaid labour: cooking, cleaning, child rearing, personal fitness training sessions, mental health check-in’s, classrooms and play spaces.
During the first weeks of lockdown (28 March to 26 April 2020), in households with children aged under 18 years, women were carrying out on average two-thirds more of the childcare duties per day than men. This gender difference in total provision of childcare was mostly driven by the extra time women spent in carrying out non-developmental child care such as washing, feeding and dressing children and supervision of children. (Office for National Statistics)
Parents were more than twice as likely to report reduced income, less than half were able to cover a large necessary expense, and they were more likely to have been furloughed than adults without children in the house, with over 20% finding childcare impacting their work. Of all adults with children in the household, 62.7% reported that the coronavirus had impacted their work. Of all adults with children in the household, 21.2% reported that their work had been affected because of having to work around childcare. (Office for National Statistics)
Our relationships with our domestic spaces have been challenged, asking us to re-evaluate our responsibilities in our homes and adjust together to a new normal. For many of us we are further being confronted with the history of unpaid labour and realities of living within it while dealing with financial cuts and growing anxieties. We have seen an outpouring of support and acknowledgement for the new roles as parent/teacher/dance partner/quiz host/best friend we’ve taken on at home during these uncertain times. Many of us now are returning to work or looking for new employment after mass redundancies which marks the next great shift in our societal wild west of 2020. What domestic rituals will we preserve in the next phase to our lives, will we all still be making sourdough in six months time?
Looks Like it's Gonna Rain
Exhibit by the Working Class Database
This was an exhibited curated by Motion Sickness in link with Working Class Database. The works were all done by working class artist responding to their working classness.
Safehouse 1 & 2
Exhibit by the Uncovered Collective
This was a group show of 48 artist, which was in a delict semi detached House in London. The Uncovered Collective asked artist to make works that reacts to the space.
Gods, Devils & Software Engineers
Deptford Does Art
Exhibit by the Uncovered Collective
We are living through a meaning crisis. As we continue to abandon religious modes of being and traditional moral systems, post-modern relativism has made us question truth claims and shattered our notion of grand narratives. What are we left with? Contemporary viewpoints have existential angst built in to them as part of their very nature; objectivity holds open the door to nihilism.
Uncovered Collective is asking artists to respond to these themes, how do you deal with or embrace issues of meaning? (or lack thereof). Shall we thrive and take life by the horns knowing that it doesn’t matter in the grand scheme or dwindle into the depths of despair. Knowing that fundamentally nothing is important? Are we capable of re-installing and maintaining a level of communal consciousness?
TOWIP - The Only Way Is Plinth
With the rest of my work in the exhibit taking hints of the working class stereotype, I need to sit the works on something that would comment on my own Essex working class heritage. With this in mind these plinths took inspiration from the home town of TOWIE, Brentwood, Essex. When looking into the furniture shops in Brentwood, I was engulfed by mirror cabinets and deep buttons surfaces, this is what I done. Also, by having the white leather suggesting the white stiletto heel that ingrained in the Essex stereotype. These plinths have since been exhibited across many spaces every time giving a different feel.
Exhibit by Uncovered Collective
This was a group exhibit of 45 international Artist all responding to the theme Postopia - Visions of technology from utopia to dystopia. Having the work situated in a old warehouse helps to show a timeline of the old and new advances in technology that was spoken about within the artist artwork. Split between three levels the dance between the old and new, the good and evil was coherent and gave the audience many things to question.
'We all live in the Freud Museum'
Freud Museum, London
Artwork - 'You lost your mum at 23, what about me?'
Curated by Marley Treloar
Marley Treloar approched me to create a piece of work for the Freud museum and I was inspired by one thing, my Mother. Tell me about your mother, has she made an your impact on your life? Quoting Sigmund Freud 'If it's not one thing, it's your mother', suggesting that our mothers really do shape us. With this in mind when I was asked to make a piece for a pop up exhibit for the Freud museum I couldn't help myself but talk about my own mother, as both Sigmund and Anna Freud has research with mother relationships. During the summer of 2018 my relationship with my mother became broken and now we no longer speak, like for most people this was a bit traumatic for me. A person that I used to be a carer for, no longer wants or needs my help, I lost not only my mother but something that I was responsible for.
I made this stucture that list many things my mother has said to me over the years, that is then crunched up into this pillar. The intention is to try and show complex ptsd where the memories are fragmented and confusing making you unable to read it all at once. Having this confusion can be tramutic and can stick with you. Freud's theories where trying to help unpick these thoughts, but can trauma ever truly be fixed?
'Who will Provide?'
Artwork - 'Only time will tell'
Exhibit by Uncovered Collective
Who will Provide? was an exhibit of 32 international artist reacting to the theme of who will provide in a crypt. Having exhibit in a haunting and religious place lead for many theatrical works that sat well in a dark lit place. Throughout the exhibit the audience was lead in many ways even questioning themselves with what they could provide.
Artwork - When given the brief of 'Who Will Provide?' I question it. Why should I question who will provide, why should I rely on others? When in turn the only person that I truly know who can provide is myself; in question what do I provide? I also had to work with a changeling space, The Crypt Gallery; yet this help me to confirm what material I was going to use, Pillar Wax. A candle is symbolic in many ways, but when it comes to the church it represents the light of God/Jesus Christ, also a symbol of worship. Yet it also show the decay of time, something that peak my interest. With these interpretations, I created a life size wax sculpture of myself, To question what will I provide in my lifetime, do I have to time to do so and what impact will I leave behind? By having the pieces balanced precariously I question but what can a fragmented person provide? We all know life isn't perfect, and at time it does seem to break us making us address this idea of mortality sooner than God plan.
Chelsea Collage of Art, London
Artwork - 'Conflict of the Human Mind'
Exhibit by Uncovered Collective
Conflict was an exhibit of 32 international artist that was challenged with the size of the gallery, so each made work to the size of 12" by 12" responding to the theme Conflict. The work I created for this was 'Conflict of the Human Mind' challenging the idea of our mental health taking over.
Perry's Art Suppliers, Southampton
Artwork by Me - Fragile Thoughts
Exhibit by Cherish Marshall, Joanna Livsey, J.Walters
Fragility is a collection of work that looks at fragility, from the structure of the material or the mind set of the figures painted. Each artist all had themes of mental health, linking to the idea of the fragile mind.
University of Gloucestershire, Cheltenham
Exhibit by Adele Cload, Annie Smith, Cherish Marshall, Marley Treloar and Philippa Reeves
Home was a group exhibit that showcased the final work from 5 BA students. Myself and Adele Cload set up this tacky house that a crazy old lady might have, for each room to have wacky interior that help tell the artworks narrative, taking away from the white wall setting that you usually have. Upon opening the bright blue door, you where then wacked with the sickly yellow walls clashing with the sexual Ann Summers wall paper. The walls where covered with Adele Cload textured collages that question what you are seeing, is it a grapefruit or is it a vagina? Depends on how your mind thinks. This clash on this sexual and innocent your at left unsure where to place yourself in this room. If you followed straight on you will go back into this small 60's vibe bedroom where you feel like you intruding on Cherish Marshall 3D paintings. One of which is lying on a bed in a peaceful sleep, around the corner is a small bathroom with one of the paintings sitting in a bath tub. Echoing in the background is Cherish's deepest and darkest thoughts, making you question the thoughts and ideas of the figures painted. These rooms are intermit, almost claustrophobic, really making you listen, look and think about the work. Walking back out and making a sharp left your greeted to the kitchen, the central part to most family life's, in turn the works created by Marley Treloar have a warming sense of family. Collaging the past and present the works hang like family photos that you'll see in every home. Following on your welcome by Annie Smiths handmade pots, giving a sense of nick knacks that seem to collect in many family homes. Lastly Philippa Reeves landscapes bring a sense of comfort and homeliness and ties the home together.
'Raisins and Apricots'
Arcade Artisans, Cheltenham
Exhibit by Adele Cload, Cherish Marshall, Joanna Livsey, Marley Treloar and J.Walters
Using a limited and unusual space, myself and the other artist produced this playful and colourful exhibit that made the audience dance around the space. There was a collection of paintings and sculpture and each clash yet complemented each other We wanted to move away from the white wall galleries and put artwork where you usally wouldn't find it. We also wanted to make the audience question if each piece was art or not. For example Adele textiles work danced on the idea of craft, could this be a fine art? My paintings being off there structures, does that make them any less valuable? Overall we question what is art? And if it's taken out of it gallery context, is it still art?
Gardens Gallery, Cheltenham
Exhibit by Adele Cload and Cherish Marshall
Myself and Adele challenged ourselves to put together an exhibit knowing that our works clash in many ways. With this in mind we used this as our theme and together we became an Oxymoron. This had themes of the dark side of the human condition mixed with sexual desire, both that we can all relate but we may not mix together.
Hardwick Gallery, Cheltenham
Exhibit by Adele Cload, Cherish Marshall, Katie Mabin, Nikki Sheriff, Robyn Hill and Sarah Wood
Encounter explored the idea of how you encounter an artwork and the ideas of artwork around it. Each artist challenged themselves with how the work should hang in a gallery and what discussions it will cause. You could look high and low and discover artwork wherever you looked.