This exciting group of contemporary artists, working with a wide range of mediums, are brought together for the first time especially to exhibit at the inspirational space of The Octagon Chapel during the Bath Fringe Festival.
Adrian Feeney presents a Retrospective from his black & white collection of circus photos from the 1990's. This was the time when avant-garde alternative 'new circus' was at it first experimental height, combining traditional all-human circus skills with modern twists and theatrical staging techniques. At the same time those circus's which stayed with the old presentation style won new audiences through their amazing human skill and daring.
Here, the old school Chinese State Circus and Moscow State Circus rub shoulders with the new breed like Archaos and Cirque du Soliel. One thing runs true throughout the retrospective, amazing human skill and dynamic presentation.
Mazy Bartlett is a mixed-media artist who has worked in the visual arts for over twenty years. Her practise has ranged from installations at Raves during the '90's, travelling around Europe as WOMAD's artist in residence, prop work for The Nat. Theatre Co., murals/paintings and artworks both in the private and public domain; She currently works as the Artist -In-Residence at a local secondary school.
'Birdy' started life as an exploration of despair, but morphed into something much more upbeat during the making, and as such, represents an ascent to a better place.
Julia Penrose is a mixed media artist, drawn to particular themes and images which crop up across the different mediums that she uses. Her Octagon work investigates our relationship with clothing, in particular the suit, and the strong cultural references therein. The suit holds particularly powerful associations, and has become a shorthand analogy for many of societies grievances.
Julia has applied three different suits directly onto plaster where the inprint takes up the minutae of information presented and leaves behind a kind shadow figure, neither garment nor non garment. These new plaster suits, pale and subtle, have transformed the imposing originals into more sensitive forms with an entirely new language.
Jane Sargeant began her creative career as a childrens’ book and television illustrator but having recently completed a degree in creative arts she has been increasingly drawn to work with a diverse range of media. Inspired by both her domestic environment and the natural landscape Janes' work includes print, drawing, sculpture and textile pieces. Space, placement, simplicity and the discovery of the familiar in a new context form the basis of Janes' work and both representational and abstracted marks are an important part of this process. Her challenge as an artist lies in a desire to make the viewer stop and consider part of their surroundings they might not have considered before. Drawing is essential to Janes' creative approach but printmaking whether on paper or fabric enables an element of surprise to reflect the transience of the subjects she is responding to. Combining print and drawing enables Jane to explore scale, layers and texture. She enjoys the resulting element of chance and surprise, a sense of mystery in the making.
David Podger presents Remnants. This piece of work was inspired by walking in woodland, the light between the trees inspired a series of high contrast charcoal drawings and the sculpture ‘Remnants.’ Exploring how our eyes can play trick on us, we can see shapes and figures in amongst the tree lines, ‘Men Like Walking Trees’, this was all the more provocative in the area of woodland I visited. This site was of pagan significance and was steeped in stories of sightings of ghostly roman armies. This element of horror resonated with my work the contrast between light and dark echoed the void.
Susannah Critchley studied Design at Chelsea School of Art where she developed an interest in photography, looking at urban decay, pattern and texture. She has a love of architecture, which is apparent in her work, often making abstract images from what she sees. Some of her work has concentrated on shadows and reflections, particularly in buildings. Recently she has begun exploring photographing the landscape, particularly trees, often incorporating trees and reflection into her images. Her next project involves looking at movement in photography, and is working on a series about a journey taken from a moving train.