‘Staring Forms’ Group Exhibition at Temple Bar Gallery + Studios in May

Launching May 2 in Temple Bar Gallery + Studios, staring forms is a group exhibition that brings together four individual artistic practices that engage with space, interiors and sites.

The exhibition takes as its starting points the structures, ornamentation and navigation of internal domestic and public space. These ideas were developed through discussions with artists Miranda Blennerhassett, Aleana Egan, Andreas Kindler von Knobloch and Tanad Williams.

Miranda Blennerhassett’s work in staring forms utilises the iconic ‘log cabin’ quilting pattern that became popular in the USA during the mid-19th century. The centre of this pattern traditionally incorporates a red square to symbolise a hearth, with light and dark strips at each side representing sunlight shining in to the room.

In this new work, Blennerhassett has incorporated upholstery textiles over the painted wall and floor surfaces. This is to convey a sense of warmth and to evoke the use of fabric in domestic environments. It also makes reference to the history of quilt making, and the communal activity of shared creative female labour.

Aleana Egan’s work frequently draws on early to mid-20th century literature, design, and cultural iconography. In particular, the garments that Egan incorporates into her installations were made by hand. Thus, they embody a sensibility of personal refinement before mass-produced clothing became the convention.

Andreas Kindler von Knobloch and Tanad Williams’ sculptural installations and interventions often play with scale and accessibility. They hint at the imaginative potential within existing architectural structures and explore new ways of navigating the world through the built environment.

Kindler von Knobloch’s works in the exhibition are inspired by traditional Japanese sliding panel doors. The panels are coated in light sensitive cyanotype solution, historically used in the reproduction of architectural blueprints, and are freely moveable by visitors.

Obscuring and revealing views of the gallery space and artworks, encourages contemplative looking and exploration. It also controls the movement and flow of people through the exhibition area. The juxtaposition of craft aesthetics and infrastructural engineering shows a duality of human attitudes towards communal work and recreation environments.

Meanwhile, Williams continues his engagement with surfaces. He implements standard building and construction materials to replicate textures and geological strata. The patterns and finishes of bespoke domestic interior decoration (such as marble countertops) combined with the increasingly specialized culture of hand-craftsmanship (stone carvers, glaziers, weavers), are echoed in Williams’ parquet floor/tectonic plate inspired sculptures.

His use of man-made plastic-based materials (foam, resin) is pertinent to the discovery of the newest layer in the geological record, ‘Plastiglomerate’. This is the name given to the agglomerate of used-plastic debris with natural materials that is forming over the parts of the Earth’s surface. Williams calls attention to the ecological issues of artistic practice in the context of climate catastrophe, and the world beyond the interior.

Each of the four artists is either a current or previous studio member at Temple Bar Gallery + Studios. This exhibition features as part of the Building Stories programme in the Dublin International Literature Festival 2019.

It will run from May 2 to June 28. Admission is free.

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