Serendipity7. Feb - 14. Feb 14 / ended 08 Place
Preview 6-9pm Friday 7th Feb (open daily 11am-5pm all other days)
Serendipity: “happy accident” or “pleasant surprise”; a fortunate mistake. Specifically, the accident of finding something good or useful while not specifically searching for it.
Serendipity explores the faculty of making fortunate discoveries by accident. Each artist has produced an individual response to the notion of Serendipity whether they have experimented with new media or explored psychology, politics, or history. Each of them has responded in a unique way to this theme. There will be a wide variety of different mediums being presented to the public, giving an insight into the variety of practices undertaken on University of Salford’s Visual Arts Programme. This group of artists explore difference, yet still remain in context within the meaning and direction of Serendipity.
Paul Carling has been researching Art by Rule and Drawing machines. In these experimentations Carling has found the outcome is dependent on the starting conditions and is often unpredictable. This of course is serendipitous and his work will demonstrate the finding of order in the apparently random. Amy Stevenson’s creative process draws inspiration from exploring both the internal and external environment, and seeks to create a fusion of unconscious ideologies with the immediate physical reality. The Goal is to find a balance between the light and the heavy, the occupied and the vacant, the spontaneous and the calculated- and in the end, revelation. Dave Taylor’s work is concerned with the relationships we have with our individual histories, and our irresolvable need for resolution and permanence, and equilibrium in the contemporary spiritual vacuum. Cathy Wood's curiosity of Mythology within Culture and Religion has led her to seek out the history of Angelology and Demonology, to find the untold stories of the beings within and show a glimpse of the stories hidden by time.
Bronte Gregory has been exploring the ever-changing dynamics and fluidity of smoke and steam. Her photography captures this constant state of flux, and freezes it in a moment of static immobility. Impossible to ever replicate or re-create. Ben Gardner will create a 3D sculpture using several strips of light that will address themes of spontaneous light exposure and pollution captured by accident when taking a picture with a camera. These long exposures within Gardner’s work allow an element of chance into the process. Alexander Sherburn's work consists of several experimental portraits, all created to explore photography without the use of a traditional camera. Produced From a surprising late night accident with a computer scanner, Sherburn aims to capture the face as it drifts into the surreal. Abbey Furniss’s work is an exploration into modern psychedelic art, the human psyche, and its relevance in current society. Stemming from a collection of purely accidental images, all of which held a mutual hallucinogenic-inspired aesthetic, and created unintentionally whilst experimenting with digital media.
Daniel Markham’s artwork explores the nature and culture of skateboarding. Markham attempts to understand the intuitive relationship between the body and mind of a skateboarder whilst navigating the urban space and architecture. Feargal McKenna has explored gender in his work. By his blending of both the physical form and of the norms held by society, in regards to what distinguishes the feminine and masculine, he has came to the resolve that gender is far more than simply black and white, but instead a kaleidoscope of possibilities. Jamie Wilson is fascinated with the restrictions placed on people by preconceived hegemony - both psychologically and physically. A corrupted digital photograph led to the use of several data bending techniques to intentionally corrupt digital data, thus creating a distorted self-portrait reminiscent of the effects that mental illness, or indeed 'madness' have on the mind.
Hazel Rebecca Clegg has remained engaged with the issues of abuse, violence and oppression within her current studio work. She works closely with inks and watercolours, mixed with other substances, and their effects when only lightly controlled. Aisha Gard has been exploring the concept of creating abstracted landscapes through the use of scopes to distort size and proximity. This has involved experimenting with the reaction between different mediums that allow for an unpredictability in the outcome. Darcy Jordan will be exhibiting a series of bold sketches that explore colour, texture and pattern. Her goal is to create a style of portraiture using bold lines and bright colours to convey nonhuman-like patterns within my portraits. The focus of Naomi Hatton’s work is colour. Her process is never resolved as colours merge and blend. The effects of these experiments can be seen in her work. Elizabeth Royle has been experimenting with rust, stitch, and fire to create unpredictable effect on her canvases.
Zoey Hyland has currently been working with the concept of making mixed media rag dolls that are created spontaneously from objects that would normally be thrown away. Jessica Clarke aims to explore the notion of greed in modern society. Through an experimental piece using mixed media, Clarke portrays her own vision of capitalist snobbery. Gregory and Stevenson have also collaborated, combining independent photographical themes to create an interactive and submersive installation. Transient and unpredictable, the intention is to deliver an experience that is both memorable and hypnagogic in nature. Two elements disrupt and distort one another intermittently, yet paradoxically unify to create harmony. Constantly changing, the aim of this piece is to convey the temporal and the unforeseen. Martine Read will play on the theme of Serendipity in an ironic way, inspired by Duchamp. She believes there are no coincidences, and everything in reality happens in synchronicity. Read’s work questions whether serendipity is simply synchronicity, expressing the magic behind circumstances and coincidences.
Serendipity is supported by Castlefield Gallery’s New Art Spaces.
Notes for Editor:
Castlefield Gallery’s New Art Spaces (NAS) is an initiative to create dynamic project spaces for artists, artist collectives and artists development agencies. Making use of temporary vacant retail, office and light industrial units, NAS provides opportunities for emerging creatives to incubate their practices, produce work and showcase new art to local communities. Currently CG runs New Art Spaces in Leigh, Widnes, Salford and city centre Manchester.
The Visual Arts programme at University of Salford is a fine art course preparing the next generation of contemporary artists and creative thinkers for professional practice. This ideas led, practical programme enables students to explore their ideas through a range of media including painting, sculpture, fine and digital print, installation, performance, fibre/textile, film and video, animation, installation, performance, community engagement and social practice, sound art, book works or any hybrid practices. This is further supported by a critical and contextual framework that is tailored to the students needs as a maker and creative practitioner.