Newby incorporates techniques from industrial textile production into a drawing practice that aims to subvert the assumptions pertaining to value and skill within fine and applied arts practice. His work challenges the design principles and craft rhetoric commonly associated with the practice of carpet tufting.
The works on display are made using a handheld industrial carpet-tufting gun and created through a process of improvised drawing. He is currently using the carpet-tufting gun as a PhD case study in how the roles of artist, artisan and fabricator are determined by terminal belief systems in productivity and commodification. His unique technique of ‘drawing with carpet’ redirects the manufacturing function of the gun and instead explores its capacities as a mark-making tool, while observing it as a fundamental equivalent to the pencil, spray can, paintbrush and tattoo needle. His works carry an awareness of the anonymity of globalized commercial production and mass labour, in direct contrast with the skilful mastery equated with artisanal handicraft.
About Christian Newby
Christian Newby was born in Virginia Beach, VA, USA and now lives and works in London, UK. He graduated with an MFA from Glasgow School of Art (2009), following his BA (Hons) in Sculpture and Extended Media at Virginia Commonwealth University. He is currently undertaking a PhD at the Contemporary Art Research Centre, Kingston University, London.
Selected exhibitions include: Brick-Wall-Spider-Web-Post-It-Note, Beers London (2019); Yo Compro Calidad, Matadero, Madrid (2017); Tetracontameron, Space Between, London (2016) and Le Club des Sous l’Eau, Palais de Tokyo, Paris (2016). Christian has been an artist in residence at Academy of Visual Arts, HKBU, Hong Kong (2019); Matadero Madrid El Ranchito exchange with Arthouse Foundation, Lagos, Nigeria (2017); URRA/Gasworks Residency, Buenos Aires, Argentina (2015) and Triangle Arts Trust’s Triangle France Artist in Residence Programme (2010). He was awarded a Pollock-Krasner Foundation grant (2016) as well as the Converse/Dazed & Confused Emerging Artist Award shortlist in association with Whitechapel Gallery (2013).
About the gallery
Patricia Fleming Gallery was founded in 2012 in a former industrial building in Glasgow’s Merchant City. We represent emerging, mid-career and established contemporary artists, covering a breadth of artistic practices. Since its opening the gallery has been committed to providing the support required for artists to take risks with their practice, while working closely with artists to develop a route to the market, often for the first time.
We champion work that engages the public, while developing the conditions for adventurous collecting; socially engaged works, sculpture, installation, film and performance. In December 2020, the gallery relocated to a new space in Nicholson Street, marking the beginning of our reconfigured programme; SHIFT, the representation of new artists and exciting collaborations.