Visual art exhibitions and events with a platform for critical writing
Birmingham School of Fine Art, Birmingham
12 - 20 June 2010
Reviewed by: Gavin J R »
There was an exciting range of art on show this year at the Birmingham School of Fine Art. There were artworks with a real sense of completion and others which had a delightfully playful sense of experimentation.
Amongst this catalogue of creativeness there were artists in particular which stood out. Upon entry to the exhibition you were met by the playful, yet meaningfully appropriate sounds of a drum-roll and a gigantic mixed-media text on material work saying: ‘I want to be famous’. The artist Matthew Scandrett reflected the feelings of many people (and indeed visitors to the exhibition) wanting to be famous! Whether you are an artist, performer or just Joe Blogs of the street…being famous is a common desire for the British public – along with this idea that with fame comes fortune. Matthew Scandrett had also created a moving image which digitally morphed the top 100 celebrities of 2009, which in essence looked like he was revealing the shallow face of today’s celebrity cultures.
Another work which was well remembered was the participatory work of Andy Hopkins, whom left a container of tiny yellow ducks for visitors to pick up and disperse them around the exhibition. This was entertaining work, which you were continuously reminded of as these little ducks found there ways onto shelves, banisters, light switches and humorously onto everyone else’s works of art!
Another audience led work was Rebecca Martin’s ‘Surveillance induced morality’ – an installation of closed circuit videos which streamed live images of those whom entered the space, an broadcast them directly straight back at you, which was great for the visitors to take part in the work, yet was rooted with messages about the spy-cam world of our towns and cities In which we live.
The final work which stood out was Hannah Ainsworth’s ‘untitled: Elastic bands’ which presented a large scale installation space filled with tied and stretched elastic bands. This along with many of her other works presented a simple yet obsessive use of materials – which came across to be almost organic in context.
The curation of the exhibition there was very confusing which perhaps reflects the perplexing layout of the school's red brick building itself. However the exhibition as a whole was pretty good, thanks to the strong pieces amongst it, and I’m sure we will be hearing more from these artists in the future.
I am an artist, performer and creative mind. I enjoy writing and talking about artwork. I am a recent graduate from a Fine Arts degree myself, and feel proud of all the great art to have come out of this years degree shows.
I hope to write more reviews and critiques in the future, alongside my own career as a practicing artist, I feel my eye for detail and broad range of modern cultures gives a edge to my writing and talent spotting.
Find out more about my work at:
Birmingham School of Fine Art
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