Clouds of Wondermesh® netting studded with copper, china and string. Plaster tablets embedded with electrical and plumbing residues. Surprising materials cascading out from wedding cake pillars. Alison Dunhill upcycles domestic & industrial ephemera and detritus of the city into objects of beauty.
For her latest exhibition,‘Upscape’, Dunhill has created fine-textured collages and startling three-dimensional constructions using found materials, everyday objects - things that most of us overlook or throw away.
“As a child I was fascinated by the shapes, colours and textures of things that other people regarded as rubbish”, says Dunhill. “I remember as a five-year-old coercing my friends to collect objects they’d find in the street and we’d arrange them into patterns.”
Broken fragments, rescued junk, discarded wrapping, household odds and ends, forgotten things from the bottoms of tool chests and sewing boxes, copper plumbing offcuts, electrical bits and pieces, wire, string, fabric, wood, glass, plastic – using all of these she explores the texture, shape and function of each object and makes it respond to those around it.
Dunhill trained in Fine Art under Sir Terry Frost and Rita Donagh, and her work has been frequently exhibited, in Brazil as well as in the UK. In recent years she has been exploring materials-led abstract forms, including wall-hung, freestanding and hanging works. She developed this practice further during a 2015 residency at the Largo das Artes contemporary art institute in Rio de Janeiro.
In the words of Brazilian curator Michelle Sommer, “The minimalist gesture of collecting detritus found in the city transforms itself into poetry in the artist Alison Dunhill’s hands … Among objects such as found metals, wire, diverse fabric pieces and small bits of plastic, structures emerge from their everyday source into a strong poetic significance.”
Gallery open: 10 - 5pm Friday – Tuesday and 12noon – 5pm Thursday