25 MAY - 3 JULY
In this exhibition at Salisbury Arts Centre, artist Mahlia Amatina invites the audience into a multi-sensory experience of colour, line, shape and form through tactile art that explores the creative side of neurodiversity. Drawing inspiration from the varied landscapes and rich flavours of her international roots and global travels, Mahlia’s visual vocabulary creates a narrative through abstraction querying traditional boundaries of style and purpose.
After being diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome in 2015, Mahlia was inspired to share the unique sensory experiences of life on the autistic spectrum through her art. For Mahlia, art heals and transforms, and expands the experience of living. Her mission includes creating communities through the combination of art and advocacy around the globe and presenting art to the widest possible audiences.
Alternate Perceptions is an exhibition which showcases a collection of Mahlia’s recent works, and presents an art installation created as part of the SHIFT! programme in collaboration with Wiltshire Creative’s group of young artists: #80WashingLines – A Wiltshire Takeover.
#80WashingLines – A Wiltshire Takeover was inspired by Mahlia’s social art installation ‘Around the World in 80 Washing Lines’, which was based on the concept of humanity, connectedness – and all that we have in common with one another. accompanied by a short extract about the person behind the washing line, and exhibited in an accessible, autism-friendly installation. As we live through a global pandemic, we are all trying to find ways to connect with each other and the world around us – and this project remains as poignant and timely as ever.
Using ‘Around the World in 80 Washing Lines’ as a starting point, Mahlia worked with a group of young people from the Wiltshire region across two months, in a series of weekly workshops. These sessions explored #80WashingLines within the context of the young peoples' lives. Themes that mattered to them, for instance identity, non-judgment, gender roles, family structures, and our relationship with clothes were explored, and the young artists had the opportunity to develop their concepts through introspective activities that utilised a range of art forms. This beautiful unity of ideas created the multidisciplinary youth-led version of #80WashingLines that you see before you.