Under Construction

3-18th September

Preview – Friday 2nd September, 6-8pm

All photographs courtesy of Adriana Carvalo

Under Construction consisted of objects and possessions, paintings and sculptures, photographs and prints, together with video and sound works. Their use and their potential to be something more: for example objects and artworks as vessels to discuss more sensitive subjects such as migration and gender; and objects that invite other modes of self expression, were explored by the artists. Our relationship with technology played a significant part in the exhibition: production, printing and photography techniques – new and old – and audio and video recorded, manipulated, presented and re-presented. This was also a vehicle for conceptual exploration: the effect and relationship between mass-production and us; how screens are fragmenting and yet increasingly becoming an intrinsic part of every day life; and how technology is letting us down in terms of sustainability;

Each artwork, with its own unique research and origin, united to reference the identity of their makers.

  1. Flavia Terzian uses a set of self-designed systems and templates to deconstruct and reconstruct the identity of geometric shapes. Flavia uses sculpture as a tool to take her investigations beyond the 2-dimensional space of the page and into the physical world.
  1. Rosanna England is a recent graduate of Drawing and Applied Arts at UWE, her work is multi disciplinary, experimentation and process led. She creates work inspired by objects or possessions which she believes have the potential to be something more. Rosie showed work from her ‘The Afterlife of an iPhone’ project. By re-constructing old redundant Apple iPhones, recycling unused parts and transforming them into ceramic and plant life installations, wax forms, photography, and metal sculptures, something ‘unusable’ is transformed and enabled to be seen in an entirely different light.
  1. Cliff Andrade studied Printed Design and Photography at Glasgow School of Art. Through his practice, he explores his personal relationship with immigration, and what it means for the land people leave behind. For Under Construction, Cliff exhibited pieces from his ‘Saudade, Part ii’, a project that has dealt with this very directly. Driven by a feeling that before he could attempt to explore and understand his own identity, he first had to understand the identity of his parents, he then returned to this land. Through a sense of place, the pieces focus on his parents specifically, and how their experience of being immigrants affected their sense of identity here, in the UK.
  1. Tom Goldstone is interested in ideas of recycling materials in order to redesign space – he sees this as a metaphor for how knowledge exists, evolves, and alters when travelling from one person to another. Tom created a series of plaster casts (part of the ‘Space Between Us’ series) of the plastic casing designed to transport products to supermarkets, that are then subsequently thrown away. By taking ‘rubbish’ and using it to create ‘art’, he raises questions about value itself, how we perceive and construct what is valuable to us as people, and as artists, and therefore how art has the potential to change people’s perception.
  1. Benjamin Jones’s practice revolves around the photographic process. Through large scale prints, sculptures, video and still projection, he explores how mechanical reproduction alters how we perceive and construct our world. Benjamin’s 35mm slideshow projection – of 80 candid head-shots of people in a crowd, projected as negatives – dealt directly with the photographic process as people as imprints on film, while ‘negative’, lending these figures an anonymity, changing their original visual identity. 
  1. Nick Greenglass’ practice focuses on how new and developing processes in printmaking can be used and combined with traditional techniques. Much of his work explores identity, specifically how digital and emerging technologies are affecting our shared and individual sense of self, and this is developed further in Under Construction. By exploring the idea found both in mythology and psychology of ‘the shadow self’ (our hidden, missing or obscured side of identity) through doppelgängers, mirroring and obscuring within the print and making process itself – a piece of work that is made up of fragmented, albeit different images of identity, printed in a variety of ways and then sewn and re-built together – was created.  
  1. James Norman’s practice is in a constant state of flux where different media and themes are embraced and discarded in a promiscuous manner. His current interests lie in the dialogue between visual objects and linguistic text. James made a series of objects of visual interest which intersect and juxtapose with linguistic texts specifically for the exhibition. The gestalt nature of the work – in response to the transitory and alienated nature of the Spike Test space, a corridor which masquerades as a white cube that has many of the attributes of what Marc Auge defines as ‘Non Place’ – explores and jostles with the notions and processes that permeate the space. A special thanks to Mrs. Norman.
  1. Helen Acklam makes and paints in order to explore and give shape to her thoughts and emotions, in response to particular times and places. Helen recently opened a Unit in the St James Arcade in Bristol, where 5 artists have been using the space as a studio and exhibition space. Throughout August, Helen herself made site specific work from her time in the Arcade and her public interactions, through paintings and videos. Helen’s work for Under Construction was a coming together and the documentation of all that she has discovered by putting this Unit into action.
  1. Amalia Pascal is a Chilean artist who believes the use of objects can help us to speak about more sensitive subjects such as migration and gender. Through the use of ‘everyday materials’, digital drawing, performance, installation, and video, her artwork seeks to reflect and challenge the ways in which we see identity, social categories, and how the pre-existing discourses that surround them are created and repeated. Over the last year, Amalia has been developing a virtual gallery. This research, for Under Construction, was presented as a video installation using audio from original recordings, and her response to these narratives about the objects of South-American women, in the form of an object created by her.
  1. Jodie Everett, by using an array of symbology and mythology, and through the rituals of the photographic process, constructs and represents the psychological evolution of her own experiences that form her identity.
  1. Maria Jose Carvallo is a Chilean artist and psychologist. Her theoretical and visual image research of the female body is grounded in her own cultural context and psychological practice. Through watercolour and the found materials in domestic spaces, Maria re-constructs figures from her research around the representations of women in art history and from her personal experiences. Maria made new work in response to Under Construction from her research that embraces the human body and ideas of the ‘wild’ human condition, sexuality, love, and nature as a safe place to be.
  1. Marina Iodice works predominately through installation and incorporates a range of media from the analogue to the digital. Her previous installation pieces have investigated women’s roles in contemporary society through her over-arching mission to build a new perception of the world: and it’s this particular notion that has been pushed further in Under Construction.

Special thanks to Costanza Tagliaferri for helping with ideas and promotion, Adriana Carvallo for taking photographs during the install and private view, Yegor Isayev for help during the install and the use of his equipment, Nick Greenglass for the poster design, and Rick Carey’s technical assistance, without which the exhibition could not have happened. Curated by Tom Goldstone (tom_gold@hotmail.co.uk)