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an independent art zine - by the ariists, for the artists.
an independently produced art-zine
She’s gone off on another tangentcreating a small, independent arts magazine.
It’s purpose? To inform and amuse in bite-size chunks. Quick ‘n Dirty, Black ‘n White, each magazine contains features on artists and arts
listings in the South London area and beyond.
The plan is to publish 6 - 8 times a year.
Contributions welcome in the form of text/images/drawings.
To get the skinny on how to supply artwork contact:Karen D’Amico
via email: [email protected]
all content © karen d’amico 2005 unless otherwise noted. all contributions fully credited
connect [event] Peckham Pet-Tastic-2 3 [profile] Ivan Pope 4 [project] Travellers Secret Box 6
catch [inform] Arts Listings 7
I attended the second annual Peckham Pet-Tastic event on Saturday 28 May, expecting to see lots of dogs proudly prancing around in all their finery.
And I did. But it was much more than that. The event featured performance artist John Carson’s live, canine-specific music, artist Jon Bishop’s interactive ‘Fetch/Stretch’ game, face painting and dog-shaped biscuit decorating. Arts Express, who are doing free workshops in the square throughout the summer, provided life-drawing with models and oppportunities for dog portraiture. The grand finale, of course, was the dog parade, which, sadly I missed due to other commitments, but I’m sure it was a howler.
Conceived and brought to life by artist Rachael House, Pet-Tastic is more than just a fancy dress show for dogs. Aside from the festivity of the event, it comments on our relationships with pets and how people often assign human characteristics to them. It also encompasses the artist’s interest in carnival, community, low-tech materials and socially engaged practice.
At the core of Rachael’s art practice is a desire to democratise art, and make it available to those who may not visit galleries and museums. Peckham Square on a May afternoon certainly accomplishes that.
There are those that poo poo this sort of work, questioning its validity as an art form. Contemporary art practice, however, no longer subscribes to the theory that Art with a capital A must be hanging on a wall in some white cube space in order to be credible. So how do you define art these days, then?
There are as many opinions on that little firecracker as there are stars in the sky and discussing religion or politics might be less of a minefield. A fair description in terms of contemporary art practice could be that it engages with current culture and its constructs, responds to those things and re-presents that response. For an artist, that response can manifest in many forms, from painting to installation and so on, so why not events? The end result is that the audience, or participant, in this case, is presented with an opportunity to perceive the world differently than perhaps it did before. I’m reminded of a recent discussion surrounding a performance artist’s work. One person trashed it, saying it was utter nonsense; the other replied by saying “So if she had made a painting of it, it would be ok then?” Well said. While it’s fair to say that many who attended the event wouldn’t have engaged with those issues in a critical sense, the same could be said for many standing in front of a painting at the Tate. Peckham Pet-Tastic Fantastic; roll on Year 3.
Pearly Queen: Lily the Pug
connect: Rachael HousePeckham Pet-Tastic-2
Peckham Pet-Tastic-2 event
profileprofileprofileprofileprofileprofileconnect: Ivan Pope
The Life of an Artist
Exploring the themes of tempo and psycho-geography, Ivan’s work comments on the ways in which we conceptualise and study the history and inter-relationships of things in the four dimensions of space-time. As such, his work is difficult to categorise, crossing over and often intermingling the boundaries between cyberspace and the tangible.
A Fine Art graduate of Goldsmith’s and noted for inventing the world’s first Cyber-Cafe´ at London’s Institute of Contemporary Arts in 1994, Ivan uses a variety of methods to articulate his ideas in his Brighton-based studio. Using anything from low-tec sculpture to GPS mapping, Tee Shirts to independently published books, his work is interesting and innovative. In the past year, he has found opportunities such as a residency at the local Tip and a GPS workshop commissioned by SCAN, a new media arts agency in the South of England and is just now completing an MA in Fine Art at Brighton University.
An avid blogger for over a year now, Ivan uses his web log, Absent Without Leave, as a means to document, reflect upon, and publicise his work. His, in fact, is one of the few artist blogs out there that actually ‘does what it says on the tin’ as opposed to writing reviews of everyone else’s work. A brave thing to do, surely, but also quite refreshing in that the reader gets a rare glimpse of seeing ideas being grappled with, unfolding, being re-worked, abandoned or brought to fruition.
He says of his blog: “I have worked as an artist on and off since 1990. Sometimes I go absent without leave. This blog is intended to document my daily working routine alongside everything else that goes into my creative life. I am writing it because I believe that ordinarily next to nothing is seen of a working routine. I am writing it because I want to study my own working routine, to see what works and what doesn’t. I aim to make a living from my work. I want to use this blog to record my work, network, publicise, comment and alter my life and working practice.”
And of his work: “I make work about me, about my life and times, about the life and times of the world that I was born into. The most important reference points are tempo geographical: today in the UK and the date and place of my father’s birth (Lithuania). These are parentheses that delineate my work. Between these points lie unimaginable events...I make confections of objects. I have always done this and I can’t see it stopping now. This is documented from long before I realised that you could do it as art and it had a rationale...So for me, when I wonder what my work is about, it is about all the bits that don’t quite fit in the outside world.”
“I have always made confections of objects”
Ten things to do of a dayMost artists can identify with Ivan’s “Ten Things to Do of a day” entry in the ‘about’ section of his blog; there is something to be said about the guilt he wrestles with in terms of time spent making work. As he asserts, it’s difficult to actually earn a living wage as an artist and when the rent needs to be paid these feelings certainly make their presence known. Nevertheless, as artists, we find ways to make things happen and continue to make work, whether that is a residency, a ‘real’ job or whatever. In his words:
“Sitting in the studio in the morning often brings the unwelcome issue of what to start with. The best thing to get on with is making more work, or finishing something previously started, or trying out a thought that came in the night, or reading a new magazine, or writing a proposal, or photographing work, or updating my website. Well, you get the idea.
Ten possible things to do each day
1. Continue making the last work you were making
2. Start an entirely new piece of work
3. Sort out all the junk that is lying around the studio
4. Write about your work5. Photograph your work6. Write a funding proposal7. Enter a competition8. Think about a show9. Throw away some work10. Do some paperwork
“I generally do a bit of each of these. I think the one I feel most guilty about is making work. If I spend a whole day on it, which may just involve sitting at the computer, or pottering around the studio assembling things, I get work guilt by the end of the day. There are so many other things that I could have done. I have been trying to get myself out of this guilt. Isn’t making work what I am supposed to do. I guess part of making a transition from wannabee artist to functioning artist is getting some support for all the detritus you need to plough through. Not that the list above is detritus actions, almost all of it a vital part of making work. Balance is all. Luckily, I’m not a person who gets the urge to go out and look at the sunshine.”Up the Tip; Assemblage, 2005 © Ivan Pope
Blue London Guard, from the ‘Modern World’ series; Manipulatd postcard, 2004 © Ivan Pope
Stalin’s Mausoleum; Work in progress, 2005 © Ivan Pope
projectprojectprojectprojectjectprojectconnect: Karen D’Amico
“I’m just beginning work on a collaborative project, Travellers Secret Box, after weeks of emails and communications back and forth with Danish artist Lars Vilhelmsen, of ‘How Scandinavian of Me’ fame.”
So began my immersion into this ‘borderless collaborative project’ earlier in the year, and as ‘UK Co-ordinator’ I’ve been given the opportunity to facilitate what was initally a web-based undertaking. It’s now
expanding to include the work of 12 UK artists, with plans for an exhibition sometime in 2006.
The project was first set in motion in May 2004 by Danish artist Lars Vilhelmsen, who sent ‘the box’ to another artist and asked that they make work around it, offering notions of ‘travel/tourism’, ‘border/identity’ as trajectories. Since that time, the box has made its way around Denmark, Norway, Sweden and Germany. It is now in the UK, asking each of the 12 artists to respond to and interact with it, where it will eventually present their experiences and outcomes both on the web and as an exhibition.
The box itself acts as a form of gesture, as well as a travelling companion. Its very existence offers each artist the opportunity to essentially crawl into, and, for a short time, inhabit the experiences of others’ cultural practices and custom; ‘the artist as a receiver of the box and the box as a fellow traveller’. Through this process, the artists involved so far have sought to locate and identify the invisible boundaries that exist in terms of social inclusion, the seemingly undetectable territories existent in terms of art and culture, and the ever-shifting locality of identity.
As the UK co-ordinator, one of the most difficult yet interesting aspects of the project has been the language barrier. Lars’ English is pretty good, but my Danish is non-existant, and as with any such situation, there are words and phrases that simply have no translation. It’s a very strange space to inhabit, one in which we each must rely on trust, instinct and a bit of faith that each knows what the other means. It has required looking at each other’s work more carefully, believing in what we see instead of what we read.
Though our art practices are quite different, there is overlap. One of Lars’ focuses is breaking through the boundaries of the ‘white cube space’ and he investigates ways in which to present work in more accessible contexts. My practice is concerned with issues that surround identity; its malliability and how it’s presented, perceived and manipulated. The crossover seems to occur in terms of how we both define the ‘other’ and the contexts we both explore. It will be interesting to see where the TSB project goes after its time in the UK, and it has to be said that Lars’s belief in his ideas and means of executing them is a testament to the power of web-based, truly borderless collaboration.
Anticipation; Digital photograph, 2005 © Karen D’Amico
informinforminforminforminformin-catch: Arts Listings
galleries, weblinks, etc.
Publications[an] magazine www.a-n.co.uk Arty Magazine www.artymagazine.comLeisure Centre www.leisurecentre.org.uk
WeblinksArtangel www.artangel.org.ukArtinliverpool www.artinliverpool.com.blogArtquest www.artquest.org.ukArt South Central www.artsouthcentral.org.ukEyebeam www.eyebeam.orgHappy Famous Artists www.happyfamousartists.blogspot.comRe-Title www.re-title.comRhizome www.rhizome.orgStand Assembly www.standassembly.orgThe Caravan Gallery www.thecaravangallery.co.ukTheory.Org www.theory.orgZeke’s Gallery www.zekesgallery.blogspot.com
Galleries / Studios / Resources198 Gallery (SE24) www.198gallery.co.uk 020 7978 8309Brixton Art Gallery (SW9) www.brixtonartgallery.co.uk 020 7733 6957Cafe’ Gallery Projects (SE16) www.cafegalleryprojects.com 020 7237 1230Candid Arts Trust (EC1) www.candidarts.com 020 7837 4237Clapham Art Gallery (SW4) www.claphamartgallery.com 020 7720 0955Gasworks (SE11) www.gasworks.org.uk 020 7582 6848Hames Levack (W1) www.hameslevack.com 020 7493 7775Hayward Gallery (SE1) www.hayward.org.uk 020 7921 0813inIVA (EC2) www.iniva.org 020 7729 9616ICA (SW1) www.ica.org.uk 020 7930 3647Photographers Gallery (WC2) www.photonet.org.uk 020 7831 1772Photofusion (SW9) www.photofusion.org 020 7738 5774South London Gallery (SE5) www.southlondongallery.org 020 7703 6120Space Station 65 (SE22) www.spacestationsixtyfive.com 020 8693 5995Space Studios (E8) www.spacestudios.org.uk 020 8525 4330 Studio Voltaire (SW4) www.studiovoltaire.org 020 7622 1294 Tate Modern (SE1) www.tate.org.uk 020 7887 8000Transition Gallery (E9) www.transitiongallery.co.uk 020 8533 7843
additional weblinks can be found on the sidebar of my weblog, fluid thinkingwww.karendamico.blogspot.com
Tangent is an independently produced Art-Zine created by artist
Karen D’Amico. At present the publi-cation is free and is published
6 - 8 times per year.
To order a printed A5 copy contactKaren D’Amico via email: