South Kiosk is pleased to present Togetherness: Notes on Outrage, a research project that takes place across July 2016, including permanent displays, temporary exhibits, screenings, performances and talks. The project will celebrate the pioneering work of the architecture critic Ian Nairn whose 1955 edition of Architectural Review, entitled Outrage, revolutionised architectural criticism.
For Outrage, Nairn took to the road between Southampton and Carlisle observing and documenting the urban sprawl and ubiquitous civic architecture. Broken into 25-mile segments Outrage proposes an audit of every facet of subtopian aesthetics, covering subjects ranging from wire fencing, telegraph poles and street lights, to military installations and power stations, culminating in a manifesto, some precepts and a checklist of planning malpractices.
In addition to the publication of Outage, Nairns evaluation of the emerging subtopian landscape also took the form of a travelling exhibition across Britain, entitled Subtopia. The imagery used and the interactive format of the freestanding display and visualisation of agents of subtopia expressed further the young critics contempt towards the planning of the town, suburb, country and wild.
Considered within the current local climate of relentless mediocre redevelopment and increasingly privatised public space Nairn’s output seems both prophetic and more applicable than ever. To highlight this lasting resonance and fuel new dialogue surrounding Nairn’s ideas, South Kiosk has paired familiar collaborators Felicity Hammond and Polly Tootal, two artists whose work, like Outrage, closely interrogates the built environment.
About the Artists
Tootal’s photographs consider the way in which abandoned industry mixes with functioning architecture and development, depicting spaces left awaiting completion or areas of recent renewal. The modern British landscape is represented as rich with human activity, yet bereft of human presence. Obscured by a lack of context, yet strangely familiar. Tootal’s subjects are presented in such a way to highlight their eccentricities, focusing our gaze on the peculiar nature of their architecture and terrain.
Hammond’s practice is concerned with decaying British post-industrial landscape and the material language of urban regeneration. Her sculptural photo work, Bermuda Grass, borrows its name from an invasive weed, though its exoticism might be attributed to that of a luxury interior palette, a contemporary bathroom suite, or an imported house plant. Bermuda Grass recalls the weeds that emerge from the cracks in the shifting post-industrial plane, whilst referring to the digitally warped visions of simulated vegetation that can be found in speculative images of opulent living.
Across the 'Togetherness' season, expanded screenings take place in the space featuring works by: Catherine Yass, Gordon Matta Clark, Jason wood & Simon Baker, Jamie George, Tom Crawford, and Mathew Burdis.