Annie Whiles has carved five female dogs from wood for her third solo show at Danielle Arnaud, trying to record her experience of the 1999 total eclipse in their bodies. They sit at a height that allows them to be seen as independent from humans. Their placement as exhibits is drawn from Whiles’ own museum encounters with objects that are strangely familiar: recognised from insistent but impossible memories.
Annie Whiles lives and works in London, she has taught at Goldsmiths on the B.A Fine Art since her M.A. in 2000. Whiles started woodcarving after the 1987 Great Storm left an abundance of fallen trees in its wake.
Her work often starts with an anecdote told about an encounter experienced several years earlier, that overtime has not settled into any logic or reason. Whiles suspects we are asleep and that at night, we might be experiencing our lives. She sees the objects she makes as probes that test this, by commingling the impossible and mundane, miraculous and quotidian.
These encounters often involve animals as an intuitive and instinctive presence, offering us a glimpse into this elsewhere, demonstrating that alliances can be made but an evolutionary sidestep has occurred, producing slight but distinct differences in appearances and sound volume. She is interested in the cultural lost property that magic produces and how she lives with the expectation of finding her shoes in a museum and not being able to explain how they got there.
Shows include Thirteen Blackbirds Look at a Man, Chapter, Cardiff 2016, R.A Summer show 2018 and 2015, Beggars Belief, Danielle Arnaud 2011 and Cuckoo 2007, touring to The Grundy in Blackpool.