We Love New York?
The work of the artists in this exhibition is held together by the common themes Heritage, Irony, Politics, Irreverence, Humour, Being 'British'.
Amanda J Kennington's work offers depictions of women that play out fears fantasies and realities . Unlike the work of British Artist , Jo Spence Kenningtons work is highly influenced by the use of Freudian imagery gathered from fairy tales. This is gender trouble at its most curious.
Karen Davies's work also engages with this area of female fantasy. Humour and the use of sinister elements is employed alongside strangely asexual characters that seem to question our relationship with power and sexuality.
Jock Mooney also enjoys strongly subversive imagery, Mooney is inspired by video nasties, religious memorabilia, warped toys nestle amongst souvenir like tack with a looming sense of current day horror. The beauty of these small images beguiles and defies creating a very black and sinister humour.
Natalie Frost looks at text and the boundaries of what we define and recognise as language. Her work responds to current affairs examining issues of threat and power.
Michelle Allen retrieves old cine-film from long lost holidays and creates beautiful prints of these film stills. She re-contextualises the imagery offering political and social insight into the conflicts between 'tranquility' of place and its often disrupted reality.
Virginia Bodman's work gives form and presence to memories of heritage and archaic domestic paraphernalia. Bodman re-appropriates the sweet design of English chintz into images that are gutsy and strong. The work reveals the possibility of a hidden political agenda within the garden.
Michael Mulvihill's series of drawings "The End of History" towering Mies Van de Rohe skyscrapers depicted as if they were the remains of a lost civilisation. Mulvihill is interested in the way each successive generation faces the possibility of existence or annihilation.
Jane Millican's labour intensive drawings fool the eye and fascinate. A slowly executed trompe - l'oeil pencil drawing might at first appear to be a quickly executed gestural painting. These images explore authenticity as material and this theme is emphasised by the creation of landscapes such as described by JG Ballard. They are both banal and terrifying in their exploration of a hideous future.
Ginny Reed has an appetite for the absurdity of existence. Reeds work questions our undiminished sense of our own immortality despite evidence to the contrary. She examines the traces of existence and compares the contents of a vacuum cleaner with the galaxy of stars.
Helen Baker's work examines the politics of heritage. Inspired by a residency in Rome, these new works , Stop and Search, in gouache on gesso-ed board, carry these messages in mosaic like form. These texts emphasise the legalities that inform our political landscape and will be our bequest.
Sharon Wilson's work examines the way heritage souvenir kitsch is employed to construct a regional identity. She is interested in the way we may construct a narrative about New York as place out of the seduction of iconography or t.v. culture such as Kojak . Wilson is interested in the potential to enhance the banal with the synthetic glamour of desire and seeks to re-appropriate 'tat' as a series fine art statements.
Helen Smith engages with her own subjective responses to the world at a very primitive level. She wants her imagery to have a communal language drawn from the Jungian and the sensational. The self portraits are not portraits of an individual as such, but of a life continued from the ancients and the ancestral.
Sister and brother Alice and Joe Woodhouse collaborate to produce thrill seeking shapes and images of a collapsed society that clash against a background of the Utopian and the empirical. Both hover on the cusp of change. Images are drawn for instance, from Renaissance style post-modern shopping centres which become the sites of Freudian fantastical imagery.