POP UP EXHIBITION by art students from the university of northampton paintbox
lorraine james, ariel sagal, amelia york
pv / Open thursday 19th april 6-9pm and
friday 20th april 6-8pm
THURSDAY MAY 10TH
Rachael House is something of an oracle, a mystical being through whose art, advice and prophesy can be sought. She speaks of taboos and charms and talismen and taliswomen; warding, warning, protective words bestowed on us through the work, which is by turns magnificent, humorous, biting and benevolent. Her group of ceramic, textured penises are in conversation with each other, seeing with their all-seeing eyes, and silently but pointedly speaking of kindness, trust and protection, transcending gendered assumptions and tiresome cock metaphors. With political and social turmoil seeping into our lives from every front, we need the protective and feisty power of House’s cocks and the cunny totems - as both amulets and as harbingers of tolerance and respect for ourselves and each other.
Photo by Rachael House
Jessica Harby’s Shield for InCase.6 is a meditation on masculinity and power in the medium of wax. This work grew from Harby’s residency at Cambridge Artworks, where she spent two weeks in October 2017 creating art on issues of family and home using her own family history as starting point. While devised as a break from the artist’s intensely political year-long work The Thing or The Oh Noeux Tapestry, the experience only served to highlight how the personal and political are inextricable.
Both delicate and unyielding, the tiles are an impression of the substantial belt buckle once belonging to the artist’s grandfather, who was a Chicago Police Sergeant investigated in the 1970s as part of a ring of police shaking down motorists for payoffs. While eventually granted immunity from prosecution by the state, he was indicted, along with two fellow policemen, for perjury by a grand jury for lying about his involvement in the controversy.
Text and image by Jessica Harby 2018