Confessions of an Intern...
Part apology, part inventory, part repentance……….this blog post marks an end to somewhat of a silence over the past two months!!
In retrospect my confession in Artes Mundi’s own ‘Confession Booth’ at Chapter’s Art Car Bootique last weekend should’ve been one of not making enough time to blog, my penance – a devout promise to record every foreseeable opportunity and to not rest until I have made up for lost time!
Artes Mundi’s ‘Confession Booth’ at Chapter’s Art Car Bootique, 15/04/12.It is difficult to recall what happened to March, and now we seem to be rapidly approaching May, only to say that time has slipped through my fingers like grains of sand, but not without uncovering a few treasures along the way.
The beginning of the month opened with Shilpa Gupta’s Someone Else, at Arnolfini, Bristol. I must admit to only having the chance to see the show the day before it closed, but it was well worth the wait, and for me it was her Singing Cloud, 2008-9, and Untitled, of the same year which stole the show (see future blog post for more on Gupta’s first UK solo show).
In recent months I have become an avid fan of the Arnolfini, not least for its wonderful bookshop, but also for a series of discussions run by Phil Owen that take place in the top floor Reading Room. The first, Reading the Critics (see earlier blog post), provided an insightful and engaging conversation around the development of art criticism and writing, and the exhibition as a medium from which to foster the symbiotic and subjective. In March the programme continued with Reading Interpretation, a discussion I only wish I had been able to attend.
The great news though is that Cardiff (somewhat renowned for being critically starved) now has a new platform for interpretation with Chapter’s Tooth & Clawrreading group led by Phil Owen and Kath Ashill. The first instalment took place on the 4th March with a lively discussion of texts in relation to Lothar Gotz’s exhibition Wait Until Dark. I am reliably informed that Tooth & Clawr’s next instalment will be on Tuesday 15th May, with a discussion of texts that question the animal-human relationship in relation to Chapter’s next exhibition The Institute Critical of Zoologists,which previews from 6pm on Thursday 26th April (a date for the diary as Chapter is also hosting Forum’s next offering, Archives & Collecting, at 7pm on the same evening!)
Tooth&Clawr Reading Group, Chapter.
To pan back to March’s proceedings, a university module on Collections & Collecting offered me the chance to research and question the development of private and public collections. As the only Wales-based student I chose to delve into my ongoing interest in the history and possible futures of the National Museum Wales’ Art Collections. An interview with Oliver Fairclough, Keeper of Art, provided a rare glimpse behind the scenes of NMW, and Chris Brown’s Contemporary Art Society Wales lecture Wales and the International Contemporary Art Scene, on March 20th, also provided an insightful overview of developing contemporary practices that are very much “of Wales”.
March also saw the opening of a personal curatorial project, Wunderland II at TactileBOSCH Gallery & Studios, which ran from the 10th – 30th. The exhibition, initiated by the Women’s Art Association, was the result of an open call for submissions from women artists; selected works included installation, photography, drawing, sculpture and an evening of live performance. You can read Joao Morais’ Wales Arts Review here.
Wunderland II – Tanya Moulson ‘Somewhere’ 2011
All of this and I am only at the 13thMarch…..!! Spike Island’s panel discussionWhat to expect from a Curator, provided fascinating insight into developing curatorial trajectories and artist relationships. Guests Bryony Bond (Whitworth Art Gallery), Claire Doherty (Situations), Vincent Honoré (The David Roberts Foundation) and Paul Pieroni (SPACE Studios) led the conversation. Of particular interest were the projects of Bristol based Situations. Having previously heard of their collaborative projectNowhereisland, with artist Alex Hartley, for the 2012 Cultural Olympiad, I have just signed up to become a citizen! Be sure to take a look and sign up for yourselves.
The end of March was largely a strange blur of deadlines for me, but culminated in the opening of Claire Morgan’s Oh I do like to be beside the seaside, at Mission Gallery, Swansea. Two commissioned sculptural installations by the artist respond to the peripheral nature of existence, time stands still, and as a volunteer at the gallery, the exhibition provides a welcome space for contemplating what’s next…