Artspace H Gallery, Seoul, South Korea
22nd June - 5th July 2011
brook & black, Nicholas Devison, Edward Dimsdale, Michael Evans,
Johanna Love, David Ryan, Mark Shaw
This exhibition brings together a group of artists that are united by an engagement with the photographic image. It is significant that over the last decade, photography has moved from the analogue to the digital, from a darkroom activity with delays to the expectation of instant gratification and the capacity to disseminate at will. Whereas for previous generations, photography was defined through its chemistry and apparatus, it is now defined by history and context. The association with truth or fact, a defining quality attached to analogue photography (even though from its earliest manifestation, it was acknowledged how convincingly it could fabricate truth), in the digital age this has been replaced by the manipulated image. It is therefore timely for exhibition like Viewfinder, to provide a moment to pause and reflect on what some of these changes mean to the artist and how the photographic image sits within other means of image production. All of the artists in Viewfinder attempt to unpick the photographic image, tease out its contradictions and above all return the viewer to an investigation of the surface.
Each artist poses questions about the nature of the photograph within this new digital age. brook & black, artists that work together as a collaborative partnership explore new and established means of image production, bringing together video stills, painting and digital photography. Nick Devison, suggests through his prints, aerial photography, the mapping of space and the contrast between amorphous data and exact location. Mark Shaw looks at the shifting mirage, images hovering between abstraction and figuration, which thwart the viewer seeking to find a comfortable resolution. Edward Dimsdale is likewise drawn to this ambiguous state, but here, in his work, he provides enough clues to fix the image firmly within the tradition of the photograph as the recorder of light. The resulting images, reduced and degraded, read more as ghosts rather than substance.
In Michael Evans' work, the images are the result of subjecting a series of paintings to a process of image manipulation called'deconvolution'. Through this process, he moves towards a position wherein the works are the result of process, which on one level gives form while on another level separates the works from any discernable source. This sense of reduction and process is further evidenced in Jo Love's digital prints with added drawing. Her images provide barely enough data to discern the photographic source from which they originate. The remnants of information suggesting a distant landscape is further complicated by dust, particles, drawn across the surface in graphite. These act to both suppress an easy reading of space, the eye continually flicking to the surface, but also makes it hard to discern the nature of the information presented. There is of course, the further point that while for the analogue photographer, dust was ever the enemy, the imperfection that revealed the lie, here in Love's work, it becomes embraced as part of the very language of the image itself. From these indistinct visions, David Ryan returns the viewer to the rich colours and detailed surfaces of Italian composer Giacinto Scelsi's house in the centre of Rome. His film explores the idea of framing and a doubling of space - such as when images are caught in mirrors - in order to evoke a poetic reading of both space and sound.
Together, the works of these artists in Viewfinder form a cohesive exhibition, bound by a common obsession and questioning of thephotographic image and how through digital technology, the photograph once fixed has become infinitely malleable.
Professor Paul Coldwell
University of the Arts London
brook & black
Born United Kingdom, Leora Brook and Tiffany Black, collaborating as brook & black since 2001 selected exhibitions 2007-11 (solo show *) 2011 Le Regard Clos*, Musee de Toulouse Lautrec, Albi, France; 2009 Drift*, The Kirkham Gallery, River & Rowing Museum, Henley on Thames (ACE funding award); 2007 Bagatelle Parallel*, The Wallace Collection, London (Architecture Week commission); Umfeld/Inwelt, Frauenmuseum, Bonn, Germany (Oxford City Council Funding); 2006 They Came to See, Hooglandse Kerk, Nieuwstraat, Leiden, Holland (OCC Funding) Artist residencies 2010/11 Plot 16, Modern Art Oxford 2009 Look Ahead Housing and Care Ltd, London and The Lightbox Gallery, Woking Funded projects 2010 Art & Architecture Collaborative Project, The Cultural Olympiad, (Creative Campus Initiative), 2008 Behind the Facade, Pitt Rivers Museum, University of Oxford, Oxford (ACE funding award);2007 Digital and Physical Surfaces, Triangle Space, Chelsea College of Art, London (AHRC funding); Mediations, Oxford Visual Arts Development Agency, Oxford (Oxford City Council & Oxford Brookes University) Permanent public commissions 2009 The Maze, Crystal Palace Park, London Development Agency, Girlguiding UK and Bromley Borough Council, London Employment Leora Brook Lecturer The American Intercontinental University London, Tiffany Black Lecturer Oxford Brookes University, Westminster Institute of Education.
Born United Kingdom Studied 1999-2000 (MA) Camberwell College of Art & Design, 1985-88 Wimbledon School of Art, Selected Exhibitions 2006-11 2011: 7th International Miniprint Exhibition, Lahti Art Museum Finland, 2010: International Print Exhibition, Penang State Museum & Art Gallery Malaysia, 2009: IMPACT, International Print Exhibition, UWE Bristol, Works on Paper, Library Gallery London, 2008: Re:Mark - Redchurch Street Gallery London, Redgate Gallery London, 2006:Three Contemporary Printmakers Flowers East, London, National Print Originals’ 06 -Mall Galleries London Collections: Penang State Museum & Art Gallery Malaysia, Cold Press, Norfolk, Cable And Wireless, London, British Airports Authority, London, ‘One Aldwich’, London, Eversheds Architercts, Cambridge Employment Course Convenor MA Printmaking and Master of Fine Art, Cambridge School of Art, Anglia Ruskin University. Visiting Lecturer Manchester Metropolitan University.
Born United Kingdom Studied 2005-8 Cambridge School of Art, 1984-87 Bristol University Selected Exhibitions 2006-2011 (*solo show) Picturing Eden, Herbert Johnson Museum, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York; Aghulas*, Gallery 339, Philadelphia; Uncertain Insistence*, Arnolfini, Bristol; Model Love*, Arnolfini, Bristol; Model Love*, BAC, London; A Delicate Balance*, MADE, Birmingham; Picturing Eden, Munson Williams Proctor Institute, Utica, New York; Agulhas*, HackelBury, London; Picturing Eden, Museum of Photographic Art, San Diego; Picturing Eden, Iowa University Museum of Art, Iowa; Picturing Eden, George Eastman House, Rochester, NY; Stilled*, Gallery 339, Philadelphia (two-person show, with Bohnchang Koo) Gallery representation HackelBury (London), Gallery 339 (Philadelphia) Employment Senior Lecturer in Photography Theory, London College of Communication (University of the Arts, London); visiting lecturer Cambridge School of Art (Anglia Ruskin University); visiting lecturer Coventry School of Art and Design.
Born North Wales Studied 1984-7 Coventry Polytechnic, 1991-2 (MA) Chelsea College of Art & Design, 2004+ (PhD) at London Metropolitan University, Selected exhibitions 2009 Grey Matters, Aqffin Gallery, London, 2008 The Abstract Unconscious NEWI Gallery 103, North Wales, 2006 St. Bartholomew’s Hospital (with Vital Arts), London, 2005 Common Ground, Rugby Art Gallery, 2005 When Science Meets Art, Wrexham Arts Centre, Publications 2009 The Vital Image, Interview, The University of California Press Jung Journal, 2010 The Abstract Unconscious, essay in: The Archive for Research in Archetypal Symbolism (A.R.A.S.) published on line for the San Francisco Jung Institute extended education programme, Employment Senior Lecturer The University of Northampton.
Born United Kingdom Studied 2007- Current Chelsea College of Art & Design (PhD), 1998-9 Camberwell College of Art & design, 1993-6 Loughborough College of Art & Design Selected Exhibitions 2009-11 2011: Bite, Mall Gallery London, 2010: 2nd Penang International Print Exhibition, Penang State Museum and Art Gallery, Malaysia; Borderless, Wimbledon Space, London; Hotplate International Print Exhibition, Pheonix Gallery, Brighton, 2009: Grey Matters, Aqffin gallery, London; 6th Graphic Biennial, Novosibirsk State Museum, Russia; IMPACT, International Print Exhibition, UWE Bristol; Works on Paper, Library Gallery London, Fellowship 2001-5 The Royal Academy Schools, London. Employment Senior Lecturer in Fine Art and Photography, The University of Northampton, Visiting Lecturer Anglia Ruskin University and The University of Brighton.
Born United Kingdom Studied 2010 Doctor of Philosophy (by published work) Anglia Ruskin University, 1986 Garnett College, London, 1975 -78 Coventry Polytechnic, Selected Exhibitions 2009-11 2011: ‘Knots and Fields’ (with Andrew Chesher, 2010), Darmstadt Classics of the Avant-garde, Issue Project Room, Brooklyn, New York; 2010: ‘Via di San Teodoro 8’ (2010) Fondazione Isabella Scelsi, Rome, plus Touring: Kettle’s Yard, De La Warr Centre, Bexhill, Italian Cultural Institute, London; ‘Knots and Fields’, Kinorex Cinema, Darmstadt; 2009: Crossing Abstraction, Kunstraum Bethianen, Berlin, Germany; Nuova Consonanza Festival, Rome; Aperto Festival, Reggio Emilia, Italy; Mini-meta, Beardsmore Gallery, London; meta-, Ruskin Gallery, ARU, Cambridge, Scholarship 1980 Hochschule fur Bildende Kunst, Hamburg, Lubeck and Berlin. Employment Reader in Fine Art, Anglia Ruskin University, Cambridge.
Born United Kingdom Studied 2007-8 Anglia Ruskin University, 1985-88 Wimbledon School of Art Selected exhibitions 2005-2011 2009: Works on Paper Library Gallery, London; Impact 6, Bristol, 2008: Midford Place Gallery, London 2007: Redgate gallery London, 2005: Case-1 Gallery, London, 1998: Alternative Arts Marylebone, London Employment Lecturer, Anglia Ruskin University, Lecturer, The American Intercontinental University, Lecturer, Cavendish College.