Thursday, September 21, 2023

Ferens Open Exhibition 2023

The sculptural relief,  'District 7, 11x8, White Relief' has been on show at the Ferens Art Gallery, Hull since 21 July, an open group exhibition that will continue until 1 October 2023. 

The 'Ferens Open Exhibition' is an annual exhibition held since 1967 and which this year presents the work of artists working in the fields of painting, sculpture, photography, ceramics, video and performance.

'District 7, 11x8, White Relief' was previously exhibited in Wakefield Cathedral from 16 July until 29 August 2022 as part of a display of work by members of the Yorkshire Sculptors Group.


The work evolved out of investigations relating to the 'Weaving Experience Into Memory' project, conducted in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, and which culminated in an exhibition at L'Usine, Crescent Mall, Phu My Hung, District 7, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. 

Having missed the opening private view (unfortunately arranged mid-week) it was a couple of weeks later when I finally got to Hull to see the show. As is often the case with these 'open call' large group exhibitions, an effort has been made to include as many works as possible and so the individual pieces are often placed in close proximity to each other, more so than would be the case in smaller shows. This throws up issues that affect the interpretation of the work, I find. 

When colours are experienced in juxtaposition with other colours, their qualities are altered and we 'read' them differently. Albers discussed this 'simultaneous contrast' effect to great lengths in his tremendous book 'Interaction of colour'. Something of a similar vein happens when works are shown together and the more works that are shown, and the closer these works are placed to each other, then the more pronounced the effects are noticed. The way we start to read each piece is affected by the other pieces around it.  

I would like to present some installation shots I took when visiting the exhibition, and allow you to consider how the piece appears here compared to how it appeared when on show in Wakefield Cathedral. It's fascinating. 

Details of the piece 'District 7, 11x8, White Relief, and the exhibition in Wakefield Cathedral can be read here.

Monday, September 11, 2023

4WCoP 2023

The Fourth World Congress of Psychogeography 2023 was held on 9 September 2023, from 10:30am to around 2:00pm, under the theme of ‘Watch This Space’.

This annual event has been running since 2015, beginning in Huddersfield, West Yorkshire and subsequently moving online in 2020, where it has remained since.

This year the submitted presentation concerned work arising from Patrick's current PhD study on the Victorian Arcades of Leeds, focusing especially on the first of the reflective art making projects that aim to investigate the movement and behaviour of people within those unique spaces.

The 10-minute presentation introduced the focus of the overall study before explaining how drawings made in the field recorded the exact pathways taken by 25 individuals through Thornton's Arcade. The pathway drawings were combined onto a single map, which is currently undergoing enlargement to make individual pathways more easily traced.  

Introducing the study 'The Leeds Arcades Project'

Inspired by Walter Benjamin

The presentation can be viewed here.

The 4WCoP website can be viewed here.

Wednesday, April 5, 2023

'Borrow Pit' - Huddersfield Art Gallery: Unit 7, West Yorkshire, UK

‘Borrow Pit’ is a term used in construction or Civil Engineering, describing a specified location from which earthen material, such as soil, sand, clay, or gravel, is extracted to be used as fill at another location.

For many years I have been assembling a compilation of visual and conceptual elements and approaches that seem related to, or appropriate for utilisation in, work about the landscape 

Over time, this visual language has been slowly expanding and the variety of ways in which the various elements have been combined and juxtaposed has been increasing. 

I now see this visual lexicon of components as a borrow pit, from which I am able to source materials for current and future work.

An exhibition of work by members of the Yorkshire Sculptors Group, using 'Borrow Pit' as a working concept, will open to the public at Huddersfield Art Gallery on 12 April 2023 and there will be a Private View on Saturday 15 April from 1:00-4:00pm within the temporary exhibition space, Unit 7 (opposite the main gallery building that is currently closed for repairs), Piazza Shopping Centre, Huddersfield, West Yorkshire, UK.

'Borrow Pit' Invitation

The piece I am exhibiting in Huddersfield is an expanding work that will continue to grow, increasing in size and complexity into the future. The ground has been broken, the foundations laid, and construction initiated. From this stage, it is the work itself that will oversee and determine the future progress and direction of the piece.

Installing the work at Huddersfield

'Breaking Ground', 2023

A video taken during the installation of the work can be viewed here.

Tuesday, March 7, 2023

'20 Minute Diameter Leeds' - Terminalia Festival 2023

 As part of 4WCoP 2022 (Fourth World Congress of Psychogeography), Mathilda Guerin created a project entitled 'Walking Webs', inviting people to participate by creating a walking web of their own city and I created my own walking web in Leeds, my home town in the UK. 

My walking web was created, according to the supplied instructions, by walking from a selected starting point, North, South East and West. Along each of these axes, we were asked to walk for 10 minutes and 20 minutes respectively and to take a photograph at each of these points. It was then possible to connect up all four of the 10 minute points and also the 20 points.

My walking web, and the photos taken after walking for 10 minutes and 20 minutes can be seen here:

Walking Web showing the Starting Point, 10 Minute and 20 Minute Points

Walking Web showing the photographs taken at all the points

I try to participate in the annual Terminalia Festival each year and so for the 2023 edition I chose part of the walking web I had created previously as this conveniently marks out an area of the city with a perimeter roughly 10 minutes from the centre.

On Thursday 23 February 2023 I started walking from the northern point, close to the College of Building on North Street, walking clockwise. 

North to East Section

North Street - Byron Street - Regent Street - Hope Road - Mabgate - St. Mary's Street - Rider Street - Burmantofts Street - Marsh Lane

Millwright Street, just off Hope Road

Sheepscar Beck (or Mabgate Beck), before it becomes Lady Beck

Grade II listed Hope Foundry (1831-1850), a former brass and iron foundry

St. Patrick's Roman Catholic Church, Grade II listed

Pedestrian Crossing to Quarry House, Department of Health

East to South Section

Marsh Lane - Crown Point Bridge - Crown Point Road - Great Wilson Street 

Car park entrance / exit on Marsh Lane, not far from the old railway station

Penny Pocket Park, previously St. Peter's Graveyard

River Aire, looking West from Crown Point Bridge

South to East Section

Great Wilson Street - Water Lane - Wharf Approach - Leeds Liverpool Canal Towpath - Whitehall Waterfront - Whitehall Road - Northern Street

'Hello Friends' by Bryan and Laura Davies, 2007. 
Inspired by Brancusi's Endless Column, 1937 and installed inside Bridgewater Place

Glimpse of the beautiful grade II listed 'Verona' Tower (based on the Lamberti Tower in Verona), originally built as dust extractors for the nearby steel pin factory, the first of the three Italianate towers to be built on the site that is rapidly becoming the new 'Tower Works' residential development

Another view of River Aire, this time looking South West from the new bridge linking Pocket Park to the Whitehall Riverside Terraces

East to North Section

Wellington Street - Britannia Street - York Place - King Street - East Parade - Victoria Square - Calverley Street - Great George Street - Cookridge Street - Merrion Way - Lovell Park Road - Grafton Street - North Street

Inexplicably ignored and unattributed artwork by Joseph Beuys, outside Leeds Art Gallery & Henry Moore Centre, part of his 7,000 Oaks work.

Leeds Owls on parade along the Calverley Street facade of Leeds Central Library

Colourful objects sit playfully in Lovell Park, previously a cattle market (c.1860)

This one-day Festival of Psychogeography has been held every year on the 23rd of February since 2011 and brings together individuals and groups who mark the Festival of Terminus, the Roman god of boundaries and landmarks.

Previous walks for Terminalia:

Thursday, November 10, 2022

Sheila Hicks at The Hepworth - Wakefield

Earlier this year I was in Wakefield, West Yorkshire to install a piece of work within the Cathedral as part of the exhibition 'Assembly' (read more about this here), and while in the city I walked down the road to the beautiful Hepworth Gallery to see an exhibition by the US artist Sheila Hicks. I have been aiming to write a short piece about the show but one thing led to another and one project after another drew my attention until now when, sadly, the exhibition is no longer running. Nevertheless, I felt that her work deserved a few words.

Sheila Hicks (b.1934) has devoted her life to the study of textile and fibre, travelling from the US, throughout Latin America, Morocco, the Middle East, India, Japan and France where she now lives, still working. Everywhere she has travelled, she has learned from and collaborated with the artists and craftspeople she has met along the way.

She studied at Yale University while Josef Albers taught there and was influenced by the ideas of George Kubler, who published The Shape of Time a few years later.  

Later, Sheila Hicks began to incorporate found objects into her sculptural work on a large scale, frequently working with local communities, reflecting the shared collaborative experiences she had gained years before.

This exhibition presents a clear introduction to her work, starting with simple notes, tests and experiments to demonstrate her thinking process and the exhibition goes on to show her innovative approach to materials.

It is obviously too late to see this show now but I would recommend looking out for future opportunities to experience her work in person, no reproductions could adequately reproduce the scale and the physical impact the work makes, however I now present a few photos I quickly took in the short time I had at the Hepworth before I had to leave to catch my train. 

Monday, October 17, 2022

'Soanyway', Issue 13

It was such a thrill this month to see my work included in the latest edition (#13) of 'Soanyway' - the magazine edited by Derek Horton and Gertrude Gibbons.

Issue 13 of Soanyway, featuring the stunning image
by Maria Garton

Six episodes of the performance 'No holiday'

The theme for issue 13 is Walking, which is a current preoccupation for me and so it was particularly enjoyable to be able to share my ongoing performative project 'No holiday'. 
I would highly recommend reading this issue and past issues of this excellent magazine.

Read the current issue #13 here.

The Soanyway website landing page can be found here.

My previous contribution to Soanyway was the cover image for issue 12 and can be seen in context here:
The relevant blogpost can be viewed here.

The six featured episodes of No holiday in issue 13 can be viewed at the following links:

Norwich, UK - 2021: Editing in progress.

Danes Dyke, UK - 2022: Editing in progress.

Tuesday, September 6, 2022

'Contingent Cartography' at 4WCoP 2022

For 4WCoP 2022, held this year on Sunday 4th September, the proposed project was entitled 'Contingent Cartography' that, similar to last year's 'Experience Mapping' Project, aimed to record the collective experience of participating in the congress.

Congress logo

This year events took place throughout the summer instead of merely within the designated weekend. Last year, participants were invited to send photographs that had been taken during congress events or during the journey to and from those events. Following last year's experience of translating the submitted photographs into drawings prior to their integration into the combined map, it was decided that participants would be invited to send hand-drawn maps that had been created in relation to some of the events occurring during the summer. In this way, it was hoped that more of the participants work and direct input could be transmitted into the final map and would, therefore, be more of a collaboration.

Contingent Cartography: Project description

The three submitted maps (ranging from abstract, to detailed, and to painterly) were deconstructed into component parts so that they could be more easily integrated with each other using ai. The final work combined all three images and was influenced in its nature by those same constituent maps. Unlike last year, which had been a logical and quite linear set of instructions (albeit instructions to walk within a non-existent, virtual environment), this year's final map was much more abstract, with no discernible start and finish. Anyone using this map could choose their own starting point, and destination and could interpret the directions in whatever way they felt the most interesting. 

Final Map

The project was presented on Sunday 4th September, online, and a recording can be viewed below, or on our YouTube Channel here.

Project presentation