Exhibition

Laura Phillips: I felt like the sound of a harp

29 Nov 2018 – 19 Jan 2019

Event times

Monday - Friday 9am - 5pm
Saturday 10am - 1pm

Cost of entry

Free

Plymouth College of Art

Plymouth
England, United Kingdom

Address

Travel Information

  • Plymouth Train Station

Save Event: Laura Phillips: I felt like the sound of a harp

I've seen this

People who have saved this event:

close

For Phillip’s inaugural solo show, the artist presents a new body of work which takes its impetus from a building in Bristol, which from 1799-1802 was a medical research facility known as The Pneumatic Institute.

About

During this time, eminent chemist Humphry Davy (1788-1829) studied the medical effects of recently discovered gases including nitrous oxide, and devised experiments examining the effects of laughing gas on himself and others. The title of the exhibition refers to an anecdote from Davy’s patient whilst under the influence of the drug and his struggle to articulate the new forms of sensation induced by the gas.

Phillip’s work derived from research into The Pneumatic Institute evokes stories and imagery about dissociative states, elements of precarity and invisible forces depicted through a nonlinear auratic story. Phillips draws parallels to Davy’s pursuits to harness and exploit these newly discovered invisible gases, through the use of photochemical processes in a series of fabric banner works and 16mm film.

The soundtrack to the film comprises snippets of conversations with a pensioner recalling her experiences of living in the house (formerly The Institute) during WW2 and is collaged with an improvised score from Phillips’ adjunct practice playing as part of the experimental improv ensemble Viridian. The third sound element is a digital field recording from club and rave nights in Bristol; a subculture that has increased nitrous oxide popularity as a recreational choice. A reappearing motif in the work is the ‘damask’ and ‘moire’ patterns, a visual reference point reflecting on visual perception; and is also a nod to The Yellow Wallpaper a short story by Charlotte Perkins Gilman about perception, madness and the search for identity.

These layered references alongside methods of collage creates a melancholic narrative that blends both historical time spans and ideas about alternative states of being.

Join us at the preview evening on Wednesday 28 November 2018, 5-7pm with free refreshments and a first look at the exhibition.

Can't make the opening? Don't worry, the show runs until 19 January 2019.

Art form Toggle

Exhibiting artists

Laura Phillips

Related events

Conversation

Have you been to this event? What do you think? Join the discussion here!
Remember, you can include links to your instagram pictures and to videos.