Magazine: Issue 23
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Spotlight: Peckham Space
SLAM Spotlight: Peckham Space relaunch as Peckham Platform 89 Peckham High Street, London, SE15 5RS New Logo Designed by Praline SLAM's Naomi Fitzsimmons gets behind the scenes at Peckham Space with an interview with Emily Druiff discussing it's change to Peckham Platform in the new year and the upcoming exhibition 'Bookbed'... NF: January is set to be a very exciting month for Peckham Space! On 31st January 2014, Peckham Space will re-launch under the new name Peckham Platform and become independent of University of the Arts London taking up charitable status. What made you want to make this change? ED: This change has come about because we want to grow and develop the organization beyond its current capacity. As a charity independent from the University of the Arts London we will be able to have more autonomy to apply for funds and also to expand the artistic programme. Importantly, we will operate with the additional support of a new chairperson Richard Watts and our Board of Trustees. We will maintain strong links to the University as we have established valuable relationships with their research teams as well as those further a-field. It is an exciting time to be working with such a great team who will make this transition a success. NF: How do you think Peckham Platform will differ from Peckham Space? ED: Peckham Platform will see us deliver a more ambitious artistic programme. Moving away from a linear commissioning model towards a more expansive one. To date, our programming has been driven by specific needs that we have identified by working closely with communities near by. This will remain a constant throughout our work. However we also plan more partnerships with cultural organisations, public artworks, research partnerships, symposia and a comprehensive schools visit programme. This new model will continue to champion social practice and promote artists for whom working within the public realm is at the top of their agenda. NF: Peckham Space as an organization is focused on supplying social responsibility for the area. How will Peckham Platform's change to a charitable organization aid in this aim? ED: As a charity Peckham Platform will continue to deliver around our original creative and educational aims. With the support of our new chairperson and board of trustees we will submit annual reports to the charity commission. I would like to take this opportunity to say thank you to Lawyers Volunteering for the Arts, without their support this transition would not have been possible. NF: Alongside this you have a new show Bookbed opening on the same date. Can you tell us a little bit about this exhibition? ED: Bookbed is an exhibition by artist Ruth Beale addressing the theme of the autodidact through an immersive and surreal installation of oversized books. Beale has been working with young people from Peckham Library to establish the first writers group in SE15. The exhibition will be an extension of this, inviting visitors to participate in a programme that celebrates self-publishing and all things literary. The centrepiece will be a large book that is also a bed, within which are pages which will be stitched with participant's and visitor's stories throughout the exhibition. Ruth Beale's publicity image for Bookbed taken by Carmen Valino NF: As the first exhibition to take place in Peckham Platform were you aware of portraying a certain message about the ethos of Peckham Platform and if so, what is this message and how did you go about choosing the artist's work who best represents it? ED: We have wanted to work with Ruth Beale and Peckham Library for some time and this seemed like the perfect opportunity to do so. The exhibition does speak of the cuts to public services and could be seen as a celebration of the success of our local library. Importantly the gallery will provide a platform for participation, debate and public opinion. NF: Beale talks about the power of libraries as 'one of the few meeting points between society and the individual, public and private.' Do you agree with this and in what way can Peckham Platform contribute? ED: I think that libraries to varying degrees perform that function of a genuine civic meeting place. I do think that Peckham Library is successful in that and this is cause for celebration. The project aims to increase younger users creative experience of libraries in order for them to continue to use them throughout their teenage years. We think that libraries could increase their partnerships with galleries in order to address this potential. NF: With the threats of financial cuts from these public spaces how important do you think it is that these places get the adequate funding and support? ED: I personally think that it is essential that public services receive as much support as they can. NF: What can we look forward to in the future at Peckham Platform? ED: We have an exciting programme planned for 2014. In Easter we are working with IntoArt on a new partnership with Tuke School. Following which we are working with the pan London arts and mental health festival Anxiety, which will see us commission Kathrin Bohm addressing issues of visibility and trade with service users from Three Cs. Then in the autumn we will be working with Autograph ABP, which will see us commission Eileen Perrier to work with students from Harris Academy on a mobile portraiture project. We will be announcing additional talks and symposia throughout the year, so watch this platform. With thanks to Emily Druiff and Peckham Space.
Preview: London Art Fair
SLAM Preview the London Art Fair Preview by Lucy Bernadette Cox The 26th London Art Fair takes place at the Business Design Centre, Islington from 15 – 19 January 2014. The fair will host a wide variety of art from over one hundred and twenty galleries including a number from the South London Art Map. Arts Projects The exciting Arts Projects section is in its ninth year and continues to be a growing platform for international contemporary art. Over thirty galleries are taking part featuring installations, solo shows, group displays and experimental film and video work. A number of SLAM galleries are exhibiting in the Arts Project section; Bearspace, Ceri Hand Gallery, C&C Gallery and The Sunday Painter. Bearspace has a reputation for spotting talent early in artists' careers and promoting them through gallery exhibitions, art fairs, curated exhibitions and collaborations. The focus is on artists who "push the boundaries of contemporary art practice". Bearspace is no stranger to art fairs, having shown at Trajector, Brussels in 2011 and London Art Fair 2013. For 2014 the gallery presents "This Science Life" featuring artists who are meticulous with process, underpinning it with a scientific approach to their method. They are inspired by physics, mathematics, architecture and theory. Each of the artists has an obsession with lines and geometry; the latter is a starting point to artwork. New artists exhibiting in "This Science Life" are: Jennifer Niderhauser Schlup, Lucinda Metcalfe, Ian Chaimberlain, Geoff Diego Litherland and Vicoria Arney. Other artists represented are Anastasia Shin, Cheryl Field, Jane Ward, Jess Littlewood, Reginald S Aloysius, Suzanne Moxhay, David Teather, Ekkehard Altemburger and Maria Mckinney. Lucinda Metcalfe, Red Towel Geoff Diego Litherland ‘We Were Never Here’ Oil on canvas 140 x 180cm The Ceri Hand Gallery works with artists who share an interest in personal and cultural histories and cosmologies, text, performance and the absurd. 2014 will be the gallery’s second year at London Art Fair. Gallery Manager, Hannah Pierce says that “Art Projects is valuable for us as, having only moved from Liverpool to London in 2012, we are really keen to embed ourselves further in the city and to reach new collectors, curators and audiences that might not have had the opportunity to visit our Copperfield Street Gallery. LAF does a great job in supporting galleries, incorporating talks, tours and events into their programme”. This year Ceri Hand Gallery is exhibiting: Hannah Knox, Henry Acloque, Grant Foster, Sophie Jung, Juneau Projects and some artists in the film programme. Hannah Knox is developing a new painting for the Ceri Hand Gallery booth and with sponsorship from Data Image Group Ltd. is producing a new vinyl work that will cover the wall of the booth, providing a striking backdrop to all the works exhibited. Henry Acloque and Grant Foster are developing new paintings; in 2013 Edward Steichen Luxembourg Award winner Sophie Jung will also be showing new work. Juneau Projects are developing a pair of new interactive robotic sculptures that will be able to engage with visitors at the fair. The artists have been developing the use of robotic technology in their practice over the past year and currently have several interactive robots in their exhibition Welcome to Happy Redoubt at Somerset House. Henry Acloque ‘Come’ Oil on panel 180 x 120cm Hannah Knox ‘The Molluscs’ Acrylic on linen with stitched wool, 80 x 60 cm The C&C Gallery founded by Joanna and Emily Gore in 2011, is an artist-led contemporary space that uses revenue from sales to support and expose artists and projects. The gallery hopes to “support art projects or works that cross boundaries, that challenge hierarchies, that create unity, that highlight beauty in ugliness, or simply explodes ideas of normality”. London Art Fair 2014 will be C&C’s first time at a large fair, providing an opportunity to enhance their growing reputation. C&C Gallery is presenting “Interstice” bringing together four artists meeting for the first time. “All artists explore concepts that sit outside the parameters of normality often touching on a space of 'in-between'. John Greenwood's ‘surrealist’ characters, Violet Finger's hybrid identities, Chris Hawtin's fictitious worlds and Ian Dawson's sculptural installations point to a world of other dimensions, imagined universes, relief or alternative stimulation that remind us, but do not exist in the mundane physicality of earthly society” Chris Hawtin ‘The Mechanism’, Oil and pigment on canvas 236 x 189cm Ian Dawson ‘Grapas’ knob detail, Aluminium, wood, paint, model figures 236 x 189cm ‘Dialogues’, a new section within the Arts Projects is curated by Adam Carr and features collaborative presentations between invited UK and international galleries. Carr believes that ‘Dialogues’ will “establish a new constellation in the relationship between galleries, art fairs and the public through their display”. Eight galleries will make collaborative presentations to form critical discourse around common aesthetics and shared ideas. The Sunday Painter is collaborating with Warsaw-based Galeria Stereo; artists Rob Chavasse and Piotr Lakomy who previously exhibited with The Sunday Painter will participate. Collaborating will bring harmony to the booths and build relationships between artists internationally. 2014 will also see the launch of “The Catlin Guide” within the Arts Projects section, featuring over forty new graduates and postgraduates from art schools across the UK. Main Fair The Main Fair welcomes several new galleries for 2014 including the Tokyo-based Whitestone Gallery exhibiting a presentation of GUTAI, a Japanese avant-garde artist group from 1950's featuring artist Chiyu Uemae. As in previous years the Main Fair will showcase UK and international galleries exhibiting work by artists from the early 20th Century to the present. Purdy Hicks and Danielle Arnaud galleries will be exhibiting alongside Photo50, showing work by contemporary photographers. Whilst Bicha Gallery will be representing over twenty-five artists including Lisa Anderson, Derek Marks and Eleonore Pironneau. Karin Kihlberg and Reuben Henry ‘Cumulus Congestus and Pannus with All that is Solid Melts into Air’ Photography Photo 50 This year the Fair’s Photo50 section guest curated by Charlie Fellowes and Jeremy Epstein - Directors of Edel Assanti, will host an exhibition entitled “Immaterial Matter” which will examine the “increasingly discernable distinction between the digital and the material”.
Review: Antiknow
Antiknow at Flat Time House 210 Bellenden Rd, London SE15 4BW 29th November 2013 —12th January 2014 (Closed 23 Dec - 1 Jan) Review by Simina Neagu All photographs courtesy of James Price At Flat Time House, the former home and studio of John Latham (1921-2006), one of the most important figures of British conceptualism, Jakob Jakobsen stages a learning-play around the limitations of knowledge production and the knowledge economy. The Danish artist, educator and activist began his project by borrowing John Latham’s ambiguous concept of ‘antiknow’. In 1968, John Latham introduced the term as the title of his course for the Antiuniversity in London, a radical experiment in education. Although Latham only alluded to the idea of ‘antiknow’ as the course most likely never actually took place, Jakobsen set off to expand this vague concept into ideas of counter-discourse, rejection of identification and formlessness. Described as “a pedagogical theatre of unlearning and the limits of knowledge”, the exhibition was developed by the Antiknow Research Group, within the frame of Jakob Jakobsen’s six-month residency at Flat Time House. ANTIKNOW SCENE 1 The Mind. On anti-politics, revolt and antiknow [Two speakers] Antiknow represents a locus “where the limits and contradictions of formal knowledge become visible and palpable”. Drawing on Foucault’s text “Knowledge/Power”, Jakobsen identifies these spaces as functioning on the logic of exclusion, such as “the refugee camp, the mental hospital, the homeless shelter, the prison, the asylum, the jobcentre”. Jakob Jakobsen thus returns to some of the main concerns of his practice. As member of the Free University in Copenhagen (2001-2007) or as co-founder of the trade union Young Artworkers, Jakobsen examined and intervened in the politics of education and art institutions. The limits of knowledge and the exclusion mechanisms of education are constantly questioned in his practice that encompasses activism, research and artistic production. ANTIKNOW SCENE 1 The Brain. Diagrams of surplus education [A collection of diagrams on the wall] ANTIKNOW SCENE 2 The Body Event (Plumbing). On improvisation, unsmiling and antiknow [One speaker playing unskilled music] Set as a mechanical theatre/installation, complete with stage lighting and speakers, Antiknow comprises three different scenes: The Mind/The Brain, The Body Event (Plumbing) and The Hand. Presented as a dialogue or monologue, the text touches on concepts such as improvisation, unskilling, secrecy, hiding, anti-work, revolt and of course, antiknow. In the last room, John Latham’s work becomes part of the mechanical theatre, with his video Nmutter (1984). The aesthetics of research are employed throughout the show through diagrams and printed email correspondences, while the theatrical props create a labyrinthine space of confusion and open-ended meanings. In the end, viewers have to extract their own understanding of the “pedagogical theatre” and their own methods of operating within the knowledge economy. Perhaps Jakobsen’s theatre is as ambiguous as the concept that inspires it. A puzzling rejection of formal knowledge and the institutions that produce it. ANTIKNOW SCENE 3 The Hand. On anti-work, counter production and antiknow [Video: John Latham, Nmutter, 1984, 7 minutes, produced by Analogue Productions for Channel 4] [Three speakers]
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