Where Are We Now?
For the last two years I have been developing a series of works depicting characters from my imaginary world of monarchy and noble folk. Pseudo sexual characters adorn behavioural oddments through a terrifying back - story of historical events as yet untold, titled ‘Imperial Leather’. Derived from snippets of overheard conversation and appropriated images my works weaves new narratives of history and myth through a complicated and sometimes mysterious tale of heartache, lust and delusional thinking.
Introducing new characters, modes of transport, and trophies that may or may not exist within the story that as yet still remains hidden from the viewer, forcing the audience to re-invent their own dialogue within the works. Works are repeatedly revisited by my over a prolonged period of time allowing for constant reinvention to an often bizarre and outlandish end.
The repeat of the triangle, sounds, sculptures and wall - based works are significant to the story to date, revealing the souvenirs that the main character ‘Gimp’ has picked up from various encounters.
I intend to reveal the occasional short story from my ongoing book in 2011.
I am part of an artists fellowship called Wilmore House Fellowship http://www.wilmorehouse.co.uk/ We are about to have our first shows at Exeter Phoenix Gallery and Rogue Studio Space, Manchester. I am collaborating with Caroline Wright on 'The Secret Isle Manifesto'. I am currently part of the artist group ROAM. I am currently working on the (Now that would be) Telling project, an Arts Council funded project curated by Catherine Hemelryk where I respond to portraits and objects from unusual and outstanding buildings across the UK with contemporary writers creating a backstory to the works and each venue. The houses are Ickworth House Suffolk, Dr Johnsons House London, Harewood House, Yorkshire, Brantwood House Cumbria and A La Ronde Devon. The project has been selected to front The Trust New Art programme for 2011 and shows open in succession from July 2011 to Nov 2011 running through to Spring 2012.
Where are we now?
I feel that although there has been slow improvement in the arts for women artists to be seen as equal to men in terms of quality and respectability in the last 10 years, there are still significant gaps that should be readdressed, particularly in the gallery setting. I would for example like to see more of an abundance of male curators? These are very few and far between.
What's to be done?
Gender inequality remains wide spread in the arts and I am unsure as to why female artists are not considered to be serious in their pursuit of visual enquiry and integrity. There are very few women that are invited to sit on panels that hold positions of great power in terms of input, direction and intellectual content. Perhaps there should be more awareness of what is lacking?
What are you looking forward to?
DAVIS BESTUE & MARC VIVES
at Nettie Horn, March to May 2011