This group exhibition presented by Something in the Attic explores the themes of perception and identity through 44 original works created by 14 artists: 7 Brooklyn-based and 7 London-based alongside a commissioned soundtrack. The show aims to unite an existing community: the Brooklyn Collage Collective with a group of carefully selected London artists who range from a daytime postman to RCA graduates. Using the medium of collage, the artists create diverse works, yet share the desire to create something new and different from the existing.
Drawn together by an intent to challenge modes of perception and re-think identity, the works in Brooklyn vs. London are at times deliberately confusing, unexpected, satirical and other times coherent, even obvious.
Series such as Claire Pestaille’s Femme Maison (2015) rely on imagery from the past in order to explore the absurdity of perception in the present day. By contrast, Adam Hale’s series The Daily Splice (2015) aims to regain ownership over free media publications handed to us each day as we enter the Tube. Exploring contemporary life further, Lizzie Gill’s Slam Dunk, She Messaged First (2015) references dating in the digital age, drawing parralells between the sensation of texting and a successful tactical move in a sports game. Although today’s digital age enables these artists to generate ideas, communicate and publish work - they have all returned to traditional modes of sourcing and working with imagery. Through many discussions, it is clear how far and wide these artists search to find the right material to work with, trawling through flea markets, garage sales and abandoned bookshops amongst other places. The search can take months or even years, yet the process of assembly can be nothing more than a happy accident occurring in minutes. A development of using only found material is exemplified in Anthony Gerace’s series The Ruined Map (2015) which combines historic material with his recent self-processed photographs, in these works he deliberately mixes pieces from different eras to create his own style, the result is an assemblage, covering enough of the subject to mask their identity and affect the viewer.
A soundtrack created by British music producer Ruf Dug will accompany the exhibition, providing a parallel to collage in the form of sampling cuts of both popular and obscure music from New York and London’s rich history of cultural cross-pollination: outtakes of Malcolm McLaren’s Buffalo Gals (1982) will meet thought to be unreleased private press records.
Developing the notion of collage beyond visual art, a series of events will take place during the 2-week exhibition:
Collage & Music, in which music collective ReviveHER invite guest DJs to create a sound collage based on New York and London records played through a TPI audiophile sound system.
Collage & Dining, in which Michelin star chef, Omar Romero creates a 6 course meal inspired by New York and London.