Mon- Fri 10am- 8pm, Sat& Sun- 10am- 4pm
Art and Humanities is a course not just about the practical making of art but also the academic thinking and meaning behind it. All of the artists’ works are about an interaction between theory and practice in art.
One such artist is Natasha Dijkhoff, whose art is based on the expression of emotion in form, whether through painting, film, or printmaking. The large scale paintings, in particular, are striking with the expressive dashes of colour and almost violent, rapid brush strokes capturing movement and life. In an interesting “behind-the scenes” element to the section, Dijkhoff filmed herself in the process of creating these paintings. This also adds to the understanding of the piece, as the viewer can appreciate how the use of brush strokes and movement creates a layered effect.
Elika Vlachaki’s project addresses the idea of the circle in a variety of forms but focuses in particular on our interaction with it. We interpret the circle in a multitude of ways, as she has tried to show. Splitting up the room into two, one with a series of objects including tools, and the other containing a large installation which functions as a representation of “home” titled ‘home (360)’, the circle offers an enclosed shape in which we might feel safe. The piece resembles a dream catcher, with a yarn wrapped cone centre acting like an anchor, attached to another similar cone via a thin piece of yarn on the ceiling which holds both in place, making us think that home will always be there and stable.
Jonathon Walda has made the interaction between spectators and the city the primary focus for his work, almost deconstructing the concept as a result. An element that strikes you as soon as you enter is the room’s lighting which is of a sombre yellow hue and provided by the overhanging street lamp. This creates an eerie night time ambience; the installation explores how we roam through the city not noticing the little indiscretions and objects that make it up. A series of black and white landscape photographs with ominous grey skies add to the feeling that the city streets are nothing more than an empty emotionless shell. Other objects dotted around the room highlight the almost unseen elements of our surroundings. These include a hub cap hung on the wall and a pile of what seems to be waste cardboard, but seen in the yellow lamp light bears a striking resemblance to a miniature sculpture of a mountain. Victoria Wood also tackles environments, not cityscapes but the natural wilderness. Her work focuses on the Isle of Iona, a place which she visited and explores the phenomenology of place. Phenomenology is the understanding of cultural landscapes from a sensory and artistic perspective, and Wood’s preoccupation is with the beautiful landscape of Iona. Dominating the room are large photographic prints, hung from the ceiling. These translucent prints add to the mystical quality of the landscape; each print is of a different hue, adding more understated emotion. A sound and video installation complements the prints, giving an all-round sensory experience and making the viewer feel as though they are actually present in Iona, taking in the view with the wind whistling and the sea ebbing and flowing.
Whilst I have picked out my particular favourites, the show is very strong all round, full of creativity and expression and well worth spending the time to take a look and decide on your own favourites.