Aboutwhat tense is the city living in?
"The development of cities is very political, with regeneration and housing being the centre of many discussions over power; how a city approaches regenerative growth affects culture. This is happening in Stoke-on-Trent.
Always questioning where the city is now going, one thing that stays anchored in Stoke's cultural landscape is ceramics. Often white noise for a lot of people I’ve been around, pottery is Stoke’s cultural mandate, a socio-political landscape forever living in its deindustrialised past.
Noticing that Stoke is a city with much of its industrial housing remaining, my work over the residency has interrogated on how living relates to craftsmanship and making new, the importance of touch and material when thinking about the future.
Using the exhibition title as a metaphor for thinking about living and working in industrial space, allotment’s are wonderful sites of creativity and material diversity. I want this to act as a model towards making within the city; thinking about the rather cannibalistic architecture of living and eating on top of each other."
- Harley Kuyck-Cohen, 2019
A core focus of Harley Kuyck-Cohen’s practice is an exploration of our domestic lives and the ever changing boundaries between public and private space. These politics of dwelling are manifested in various media - sculpture, architecture and installation, and often incorporate time based assemblages that imply waste and renewal. Harley graduated with a BA from the Slade School of Fine Art, UCL (2018), and was recently shortlisted for the Woon Prize in Sculpture and Painting (2018). Present group exhibitions include Preserves [Artist-Run, London], MOTEL [The Slade School of Art, London] and More Gas [Assembly House Studios, Leeds].
Each year, AirSpace Gallery’s Graduate Residency Programme offers two new graduates a fantastic opportunity to be part of an exciting and innovative artist-led space in Stoke-on-Trent, providing 6 months free studio space, ongoing professional development support, mentoring and guidance in those crucial first months out of higher education, and an end-of-residency solo exhibition. Now into its 7th year, the residency programme is an attempt to tackle and highlight a problem with graduate retention in the city, offering early stage professional development support to artists.