SIB is delighted to present Metarelics VOL. 2 an exhibition of new work by Xavier Poultney. This forthcoming exhibition will be Poultney's second solo show with the gallery and follows on from an earlier project - Tri Outputs - which was exhibited at KoŠ ¡ice, Slovakia in 2012.
Metarelics VOL. 2 features a collection of drawings made over a two-year period; installed on customised display units they form part of Poultney's continued research in to past and present forms of communication, scientific objects, data, relics and how we try to make sense of the world around us both historically and in the present day.
Using the Internet, Poultney searched for images from many different sources, focusing particular attention on computer-generated renditions and scans of real, or existing, artifacts. From these digital images he has created a series of tableauxed and multi-layered hand-drawn constructions; compiled from an array of curious images which he terms 'relics of progress', these images define various paradigms of thinking and technology, such as floppy disks, electrical transformers and statues of Buddha.
By taking 3D renderings of existing objects and drawing them in pencil on paper, Poultney references the history of botanical and ethnographic drawings typical of 18th Century explorers, scientists and illustrators: a means to represent and archive new findings and objects. However, unable to pick up the detail within each pixel of the digital image, Poultney draws our attention to the humanly impossible task of recreating the sublimity of the source imagery.
The display of the drawings throughout the gallery invites the audience to muse over them, in the same way as we might a collection of Neolithic flints or Victorian medical tools in a museum. Developing the reading of the work in the context of an archive or as archeological artifact creates a feedback loop of meaning as (valuable) object becomes digitized, digital image becomes hand-rendered, and drawing is (re)-displayed as artifact.
The result is that these âmetarelics' appear to play with the passage of time, as though history could have happened in reverse and the accepted linear of past, present and future is thrown in to question.
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