Rowena Wright’s work perceptively captures a transition from the figurative to the abstract. An acknowledgment of Wright’s working process is crucial to an understanding of her sculpture. Although abstract in appearance it evokes the figurative and corporeal through the physicality of her engagement with materials. Wright’s sculptures trace the labour of her hands, seeking to capture an essence of the ‘body’ in abstract form. She claims ‘If my sheet steel appears fluid and my copper is reminiscent of skin, it indicates to me that my intentions are being realised.’
Inspired by photographs and found images of architecture, landscape and objects, Lottie Murphy’s paintings create spaces that engulf the viewer within an insecure, absurd otherworld. With landscape as a dominant feature, Murphy combines the worlds of the city and the countryside into what she describes as ‘edge lands’, free from context and inhabitance. Murphy’s paintings evoke the surrealism of artists such as Frida Kahlo and Leonora Carrington. Although she does not depict people, her paintings are fraught with the human dimensions of ambiguously placed chairs, stairs and doorways and other mysterious architectural features to infer a non-identifiable human presence.
With a background in film-making, Kaya Tokuhisa’s ‘dramatic’ still life oil paintings offer a re-interpretation of the traditional still life genre, which is unusually conceptual. Lighting is used to create the appropriate mood of a particular situation, just as it would on a film set or stage, and her objects take on an anthropomorphic significance as human characters. In Petrified Pomegranates the traditional use of the pomegranate as a symbol of fertility is transformed. The two pomegranates are attributed a more corporeal presence as if huddled together in fear, threatened by the proximity of a sharp knife.
Kit Brown’s work featured in this exhibition demonstrates a divergence from his usual formats of installation, sound and video. His new series of small wall based pieces are potentially inconspicuous in comparison to his previous work, but nevertheless as experimental. Chance is largely embraced and the simplicity of the work is intentional. It aims to assimilate the complexities of expanded thought in a distilled and fundamental essence.
Lizy Bending embraces the heritage of political printmaking in order to make issues surrounding politics, society, culture and the economy more easily accessible. Combining print media with the construction of objects, her practice aims to provoke discussion, using emotive aesthetics that transform socio-political concepts into visually stimulating bodies of work. She creates culturally relative, digital prints that are then transformed and applied to the physical, occupying space, through archival and museology interests.
Tina Crawford uses the sewing machine as her main artistic medium to depict fantastical images of the skeletal and anatomical forms of both real and mythological creatures. Her powerful images reveal the potentiality of the supposedly humble technique of the sewing machine when placed in the hands of an insightful and informed artist. She has had a successful career in free embroidery illustration, designing pieces for clients such as Shakespeare’s Globe, Kew Gardens and the Museum of London. We are now delighted to show her new work within an art gallery context.