Memory and observation
Friday May 3 to Thursday June 13, 2019, Dartington Space Gallery
An exhibition of work by Clare Heaton, Katy Oxborrow and Laura Denning: a series of moments, pauses, memories and observations drawn in very different ways and in different media.
Clare creates felted vessels and wrappings about which she says: ‘The vessels are matted together with the moment, sentiment, memory, conversations, meetings and reveries. The felted wrappings envelope flowers and nature, catching a memory and a moment in time…. There is a magic in the making, an alchemy, an unpredictability. With the wrappings I endeavour to catch the soul of living matter, its quiddity, impression, gesture. They become a collection of spirits, totems and small things that are other-worldly, strange, magical and enchanted.’
Katy works with various drawing media and with collage. Several of the works in this exhibition are directly drawn from trees at Dartington. ‘[Tree] bark’ she tells us ‘is like a curtain, concealing the unknown.’ This work prefigures the next exhibition in the gallery and across the estate which focuses entirely on trees and woodland and how we live with them.
Katy tells us that ‘the process of producing the works…evolves organically and is all consuming and immersive. I use the medium of painting in all its variety, combined with collage, found text, layering and mark making, to create a personal response to the natural world around me.’
Laura’s work is less figurative and more conceptual, but still rooted in the natural world. ‘Rhyne & Huish’ she tells us ‘is a long term project which seeks to uncover secrets within the Somerset landscape that can help us to be better prepared for living in a wetter world. This transdisciplinary project uses sound, moving image, photography, drawing, collaboration, experimental geography and performative ethnography as research tools.’
Meet-the-artists at First Friday, 13.00 to 15.30 May 3
As part of First Friday we will have a conversation with the artists in the exhibition, in person or via Skype.
[Main image: Katy Oxborrow: Center Grain (detail)]
Artist statements and short biographies
I have created a material trace of summer 2016 and summer 2018 in felted vessels and felted wrappings.
The vessels are matted together with the moment, sentiment, memory, conversations, meetings and reveries. The felted wrappings envelope flowers and nature, catching a memory and a moment in time.
I follow my intuition and try to be alive to the messages, to listen to the spirits, the psyches.
There is a magic in the making, an alchemy, an unpredictability. With the wrappings I endeavour to catch the soul of living matter, its quiddity, impression, gesture. They become a collection of spirits, totems and small things that are other-worldly, strange, magical and enchanted.
Clare Heaton – short biography
Clare has studied at Winchester School of Art and Exeter College and is currently completing a BA Fine Art at Plymouth College of Art.
I work with local and personally sourced rare breed fleece and trap within it found nature. Catching the soul and quiddity of living matter and imbuing it with personal lived experience, I seek to create a material trace of moments in time. This intuitively created work expresses something enchanting and other worldly, with a strange magical feel which is realised in folkloric and invocatory hanging objects.
Artist contact details
My ‘Tree Series’ has drawn influence from Carl Gustav Jung, the Swiss psychiatrist and psychotherapist. For him the tree symbolised individuation: the roots reflecting the unconscious, the trunk conscious realisation and the crown : goals of life. The process of producing the works themselves evolves organically and is all consuming and immersive.
I use the medium of painting in all its variety, combined with collage, found text, layering and mark making, to create a personal response to the natural world around me.
Katy Oxborrow – short biography
Katy Oxborrow was born in Seaford, East Sussex. Since graduating from the University of Brighton in 2014 with a Fine Art Degree, Katy has exhibited in solo and group exhibitions throughout the South. Having grown up next to the sea and to the South Downs, the natural world is the central focus of her practice, which she explores, collecting material and inspiration, before creating her personal response to the landscape, using the medium of painting in all its variety.
Artist contact details
Rhyne & Huish is a long term project which seeks to uncover secrets within the Somerset landscape that can help us to be better prepared for living in a wetter world. Spending time around the RSPB Ham Wall Nature Reserve in particular, walking the rhynes and ditches, across board walks and along very long and very straight footpaths that follow these man-made waterways led to the development of these drawings.
The process of mapping the experiential and sensory responses to this unique place – bearing witness to the people, wildlife and elemental aspects of the environment – water in particular –through visits, collaborative walks, and periods of solitude, demanded some kind of punctuation – a record of ‘moments, pauses, memories and observations’.
This capture of sensory data feeds into the larger and longer body of work within the Rhyne & Huish project by suggesting a series of scores, using simple mark-making onto (found) brown card, which is perforated to suggest amplification. All my visits to this area, whether alone or as part of a collaborative walking exercise, have included sound recordings which will be edited later in 2019 to create ‘Sonic Rhynes’. These drawings will guide that editing process.
Laura Denning – short biography
UK based artist, working nationally and internationally, through commissions, residencies and installations. My practice is informed by initial training as a painter. Current work uses Experimental Geography/Performative Ethnography, which can also be described as socially engaged, and which uses participatory and collaborative practice to create new work. I also use moving image and sound, often using field recordings as the basis for short films, sonic works and installations. https://lauradenningartworks.weebly.com/
Artist contact details