Saturday, 9 May 2009
To the Generator and the Craigtay Hotel last night for the annual They Had Four Years exhibition and the associated after-party. I pasted the press information and took a few photos, with a proper review to follow sometime next week.
Generator Projects presents 'They Had Four Years', the gallery's annual exhibition of new work from a selection of recent graduates. This year we have chosen open up the remit to include a shortlist from all four of Scotland’s art schools.
Of this shortlist we have decided to exhibit three of the candidates; Iain Sommerville and Lauren Gault (Both Duncan of Jordanstone graduates) and Kevin Harman from Edinburgh College of Art.
Sommerville’s work is preoccupied with the carnivalesque imagery of past cultures, particularly that of medieval/Renaissance Europe, which compliment a number of his thematic leanings. These include subjects regarding punishment and humility with relation to gender and entertainment.
The rituals and motifs of past European cultures provide a broad range of aesthetic possibilities with which themes regarding the darker aspects of punishment, entertainment and gender are addressed.
Gault’s practice has long been governed by a preoccupation with the realm beyond instinct. Utilising Rene Girard’s philosophical writings on the notion of ‘mimetic desire’, Gault selects and manipulates recurring themes and imagery from a vast area of research spanning cultural analysis, animal behaviours, Greek tragedy and Biblical writings.
Gault selects and manipulates imagery, colour and form in a deliberate attempt to develop a succinct language for a complex field of enquiry. Myth, fact and symbol merge in unanimous defiance of classification in bold abstract form. The bestial and mortal, meet the divine and sacred in a bizarre flirtation that is both charming and unsettling.
Harman’s practice involves creating temporary sculptures with hints of performance with important elements of recycling in our current economic climate. Reconfiguring everyday objects, which are chosen for their gritty nostalgic feel Harman aims to give an access point to the audience to view them in a new light.
The tones, colours, soul, texture, weight and shape of the materials used by Harman are sensitively taken into consideration and is developed with a running questioning of the artists own masculinity, resulting in a sympathetic body of work with often brutal undertones.