2016 Syllabus II

Syllabus II: An alternative peer led learning programme for artists

S1 Artspace hosts the third retreat in the second year of the Syllabus with artists selected from an open call: Mira Calix, Faye Claridge, Mike Harvey, E. Jackson, Tyler Mallison, Nika Neelova, Tom Smith, Dylan Spencer-Davidson, Thomas Whittle and Laura Wilson.

The retreat is devised and lead by curator George Vasey, who is one of the programme leads throughout the year alongside artist Milly Thompson. S1 Artspace’s retreat includes contributions from Katrina Palmer, Jeremy Akerman, Ruth Beale and Jonathan P. Watts, alongside Slide Night at Abbeydale Picture House and visits to arts organisations and artists studios in Sheffield.

Syllabus II is a national programme delivered by Wysing Arts Centre, Cambridge, Eastside Projects, Birmingham, New Contemporaries, S1 Artspace, Sheffield, Spike Island, Bristol, and Studio Voltaire, London, working in partnership. It provides an alternative learning programme for artists over a one-year period which is peer led and developed collaboratively with the artists and partners.

The artists are based across the UK – Sussex, Essex, Edinburgh, Warwickshire and London – and represent a wide range of ages and experience, coming from across the globe. Their work includes painting, sculpture, music, publishing, installation and performance, alongside cross-disciplinary and curatorial practices.

Starting at Wysing in September 2016, the artists come together to share their work, and co-develop the year’s syllabus alongside the partners. Meeting every two months, the cohort invite guest artists, curators, writers and other practitioners to deliver intensive seminars at each of the partner venues.

After the pilot year of The Syllabus in 2015, which has already seen ten artists develop a strong peer support network and create new opportunities, the partners invited applications for year two through an open call. Following an interview process that sought to select artists from a wide range of backgrounds and whose work reflects a range of interests and practices, the partners are delighted to announce the second cohort of the programme.

For full details please download the press release.

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2016 The Brutalist Playground

The Brutalist Playground

The Brutalist Playground is an exhibition by 2015 Turner Prize winner Assemble and artist Simon Terrill, exploring post-war design for play. Originally commissioned by the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA), this touring exhibition has been reimagined for the Brutalist icon that is the Park Hill estate in Sheffield. Featuring a new commission based on Park Hill’s original playgrounds built by architects Jack Lynn and Ivor Smith between 1957-61, it investigates the materiality and visual language of post-war landscapes through an immersive, climbable and conceptual landscape.

Championed by architects and urban planners, these playgrounds were supposed to offer a safe and considered place for children’s play, while giving ‘free reign to the imagination’, actively moving away from the ‘toy-land whimsy’ found in conventional playground design.

Constructed from wood, brick and mostly concrete, these playgrounds were integrated into the surrounding landscape through their materials and form, often reflecting architectural preoccupations of the time.

By the early 1970s, these designs were falling out of favour, receiving criticism from the architectural community and child welfare campaigners. As a result many playgrounds have been lost or redeveloped, deemed unsuitable for play. A lesser-known aspect of the history of social housing, there is little material evidence of these spaces today, yet photographs, drawings and written descriptions can be found in archives and libraries. Consigned to the archive, they stand as a curious footnote in the wider narrative of post-war reconstruction.

The Brutalist Playground seeks to establish a contemporary narrative for these objects and ideas. It shifts the focus away from the much debated post-war residential buildings, largely remembered for their social and structural failures, to the equally important playgrounds found at the feet of these structures, allowing for renewed understanding of the architects’ original designs and intentions.

For this project, architectural collective Assemble and artist Simon Terrill have used archival materials, drawings and photographs from RIBA’s Collections to create an interactive installation that raises questions over design for play, from both a historic and contemporary perspective, with a focus on the element of risk.

Large-scale fragments of four distinct ‘Brutalist’ playgrounds from Churchill Gardens, London, Seamount Court Aberdeen, Brownfield Estate, London and Park Hill, Sheffield, have been recreated in 1:1 scale for the exhibition offering an opportunity for audiences of all ages to immersive themselves in a surreal landscape of post-war play.

The Brutalist Playground is supported by Yorkshire Festival 2016, RIBA, Arts Council England, The Elephant Trust, Urban Splash, Sheffield Town Trust and Thornbridge Brewery.

Please see our events page for a full list of associated events.

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2016 Michel Auder: Art Sheffield 2016

Art Sheffield 2016: Up, Down, Top, Bottom, Strange and Charm

The Art Sheffield festival returns for its fifth edition this April with Up, Down, Top, Bottom, Strange and Charm, curated by Martin Clark. Artists include: Marie Angeletti, Michel Auder, Charles Atlas, Anna Barham, Steven Claydon, Mark Fell, Beatrice Gibson, Pat Hearn and Shelley Lake, Florian Hecker, Hannah Sawtell, Richard Sides and Paul Sietsema. Scratch video works will be shown by George Barber, Nick Cope, Jeffrey Hinton, Duvet Brothers, John Scarlett Davis, Gorilla Tapes, John Maybury, Kim Flitcroft and Sandra Goldbacher.

Conceived as an ‘exploded’ group show, Art Sheffield will present a carefully selected programme dedicated entirely to sound and moving image, exhibited across Sheffield’s galleries, venues, industrial and urban spaces.  For Art Sheffield 2016, S1 Artspace will present a group of video works by Michel Auder in its new temporary gallery at The Scottish Queen on the iconic Park Hill Estate.

Michel Auder’s films and videos are recordings of his surroundings, his private life and the people around him. The French artist first began exploring video as an artistic medium in the late 1960s after moving to New York and becoming part of the circle of artists and performers associated with Andy Warhol’s The Factory, whose exploits he recorded in his video diaries. Over the last 50 years he has shot thousands of hours of film, initially with Super 8, 16mm and 35mm cameras and subsequently embracing the latest video and digital media as they became available.

Auder carefully edits together footage from this vast archive, demonstrating an intuitive feel for composition, colour and form, to create poetic associative works that feel fragmented and dream-like. Perhaps none more so than Narcolepsy (2010), which consists of footage that Auder describes as “probing into the mind that registers, juxtaposes, computes and then dozes off.”   A recurrent image is the face of a young woman afflicted with uncontrollable fits of sleep. The piece is fuelled by water and fire, the sound of a jet of water from a tap hitting the video camera and the graphic pattern of sparks flying against the evening sky.

To make Untitled (I Was Looking Back To See If You Were Looking Back At Me To See Me Looking Back At You) (2012), Auder devoted himself to filming an apartment building on the opposite side of the street by night for many months. The camera zooms into dimly lit interiors, looking for signs of life, catching people as they quarrel or make love, and impassively recording their most casual activities: drinking, sleeping or watching television. These scenes hint at the swarm of stories and lives contained in such tower blocks and S1 Artspace, situated within the residential blocks at Park Hill, provides an ideal context in which to view these films.

Born in Soissons, Frances, Auder lives and works in Brooklyn New York. He has been teaching at the Yale School of Art since 2005. His work has been exhibited at the Museum of Modern Art, New York; The Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam; Centre Pompidou, Paris; The Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; dOCUMENTA (13); The Renaissance Society, Chicago and Kunsthalle, Basel.

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2016 S1 Bursary Holders: 2016

S1 Introduces presents new work by the 2015/16 S1 Bursary Holders, James Dixon, Charlotte Milnes, Sophie Robinson and Sam Whyte. Four recent BA Fine Art graduates from Sheffield Hallam University who were selected to take part in this year’s bursary programme based on the strength and diversity of their individual practices.

Established in 2009, the S1 Bursary Programme supports fine art graduates from Sheffield Hallam University during a critical time of any artist’s career – the first year of professional practice following graduation. The programme provides a valuable opportunity for recent graduates to benefit from working within a professional artist studio complex through the provision of subsidised studio space, mentoring from S1’s alumni, and the opportunity to present new work in the concluding exhibition S1 Introduces.

For the exhibition, James Dixon presents a number of videos produced at the wool factory where he works part time in Bradford. Hypnotic and repetitive machine processes are captured on film, which are only occasionally interrupted by the presence of a factory worker. Accompanying the film is a sculpture made from a ton of wool salvaged from the factory floor.

Charlotte Milnes has taken inspiration from the location of S1 Artspace’s new temporary gallery at the brutalist Park Hill housing estate. Photographs of stripped interiors form the starting point for a series of digitally manipulated images and materials salvaged from the site are transformed into a new sculptural assemblage.

Also taking inspiration from Park Hill is Sam Whyte who presents a new large-scale sculptural installation developed over several weeks on site. Daily forays across the abandoned part of the estate have resulted in debris and materials being collected by Whyte that he has incorporated into his new sculptural work.

Sophie Robinson’s new film works explore where the ‘real’ collides with fantasy. Sweeping views of the bucolic English countryside are interrupted and fractured by glitches and ruptures as you realise you are looking at a digital rendering of a landscape courtesy of Google earth.

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2016 Syllabus

Wysing Arts Centre, Eastside Projects, New Contemporaries, S1 Artspace, Spike Island and Studio Voltaire, have collectively developed The Syllabus, a new programme that will support ten artists across one year.

The artists who have been selected for The Syllabus 2015/16 are Simon Bayliss, Noel Clueit, Susie Green, Mathew Parkin, Rory Pilgrim, Jessica Sarah Rinland, Tom Salt, Lucy Steggals, Tom Varley and Rafal Zajko.

S1 Artspace’s retreat is the fifth in this year-long programme and is led by Artist and Professor Keith Wilson.

This weekend session focuses on the challenges, considerations and potential pitfalls of commissioning and presenting new work in a variety of contexts. With contributions from Brian GriffithsSally Shaw and Tom Morton, it will provide an opportunity for participants to consider who is involved in allowing their work to go public, and how context might alter the perception of it.

Artist Brian Griffiths will discuss his experience of creating major public commissions such as his Art on the Underground project in 2007, Brian has also taught in the sculpture department at the RCA and is now working mainly at the Royal Academy Schools. Sally Shaw is Head of Programme at Modern Art Oxford and previously managed the Fourth Plinth commissions. Before this Sally was Senior Curator for Art on the Underground.

Tom Morton comes from both a critic’s and commissioner’s perspective through his many years as contributing editor at Frieze and acting as independent curator at large (co-curating the last British Art Show with Lisa Le Feuvre, for example). He is also a practitioner, writing his own literary fiction as well as reviews and catalogue essays. All will come together with Keith to discuss the successes and the failures that come with the commissioning of new work.

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2015 ICA: Film Open

Film Open, is a new screening programme of artist films, featuring twenty recent works selected from an open call to Associate members or Studio holders of Spike Island, Bristol; Extra Special People, Birmingham; Transmission Gallery, Glasgow; Castlefield Gallery, Manchester and S1 Artspace, Sheffield.

Index, the title for this year’s Film Open, references the open call submission process while critically reflecting on the methods and approaches of many of the participating artists;

Liam Allan, Dan Auluk, Emma Charles, Karen Cunningham, Aideen Doran, Jemma Egan, Warren Garland, Alexander Storey Gordon, Lewis Den Hertog, Toby Huddlestone, Stuart Layton, Maryniak and Mclean, Mathew Parkin, Fred Pedersen, Susannah Stark, Jack Saunders, Jane Topping, Charlie Tweed, Grace Williams and Laura Yuile.

Steven Cairns, ICA Associate Curator of Artists’ Film and Moving Image and Film Open 2015 selector, said: ‘The programme features some of the best works by emerging artists from across the country. Not only does the Film Open offer an opportunity for artists, the screening programmes are also a unique opportunity for audiences to discover new artists and amazing works’.


PROGRAMME:

Index: PART 1
Warren Garland, Welcome to Baltia, (2014), 4 min
Jack Saunders, Post-Incubation, (2014), 7 min
Lewis Den Hertog, Protein Shake – Episode 1, (2014), 15 min
Karen Cunningham, Development, (2000-15), 9 min
Susannah Stark, Coatl, (2015), 2 min
Fred Pedersen, Mannequin, (2014/15), 2 min
Emma Charles, After the Bell, (2009), 4 min
Liam Allan, To the free spirits in all cultures that Soichiro Honda typifies, (2014), 14 min
Mathew Parkin, One Touch Reworked, (2014), 10 min
Maryniak and McLean, Adam and Eve in the Garden of Sweden, (2013), 1 min

Index: PART 2

Stuart Layton, You never wash up after yourself, (2014), 3 min
Toby Huddlestone, Video Apathy, (2010), 7 min
Charlie Tweed, Archimeters, (2012), 5 min
Jemma Egan, Buns, (2015), 1 min
Alexander Story Gordon, Ur/Err, (2012), 13 min
Jane Topping, Teeth, (2014), 2 min
Aideen Doran, Oblomov’s Dream, (2014-15), 18 min
Grace Williams, V is for Val, (2013), 30 sec
Dan Auluk, Move Closer, (2014), 4 min
Laura Yuile, Identified Objects, (2015), 4 min

 

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2015 I Can Read With My Eyes Shut

I Can Read With My Eyes Shut
Joseph Cutts – Natalie Finnemore - Emily Musgrave – Peter Martin
19 Nov – 30 Jan 2016

S1 Artspace is pleased to present I Can Read With My Eyes Shut; an exhibition of new commissioned work by four artists based at S1 Artspace.

In 2009, S1 Artspace established its Bursary Programme to support new graduates in their first year of professional practice. The four artists presented in I Can Read With My Eyes Shut were among the first selected and have since continued to develop their practice within the fold of S1.

Working predominantly in sculpture and collage, Emily Musgrave researches methods of display and composition. She often utilises low-value or discarded materials in works that explore their own permanence, value and substance.

Joseph Cutts examines the physicality of video medium, creating moving image works that are abstract both in their aesthetic and narrative form.

Natalie Finnemore creates sculptures that draw influence from the structural conventions of a space – line, colour and composition. The scale and volume of her works is suggestive of furniture or play-objects enticing the viewer to interact.

Working across sound and video, Peter Martin interlaces video sequences, found photographs and old TV adverts to highlight the subtleties that are integral to an overlying narrative and the constructs of our digital culture.

 

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2015 Peter Doig

Peter Doig: there is no wealth but life
16 Sep – 24 Oct 2015

The first UK exhibition devoted to the graphic work of one of the most internationally-renowned painters working today.  Showcasing graphic works spanning the period 1986 – 2013 from the private collection of Sheffield-based collector Tim Dickson, there is no wealth but life reveals an important, little known and rarely exhibited aspect of Peter Doig’s practice.

Internationally acclaimed as one of today’s leading painters, Peter Doig has also worked extensively as a printmaker. However, despite this engagement and the close relationship between the artist’s paintings and prints, this aspect of his work is still little known and his prints have seldom been exhibited.

The exhibition will be complimented with ephemera, relating directly to the works on display. The prints range from relatively straightforward single plate etchings to highly complex works which combine various printmaking techniques including hard and softground etching, drypoint, spitbite etching and aquatint.

 

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2015 Park Hill

April 2015 saw the launch of a new exhibition space in Sheffield, housed within the former Scottish Queen pub at the Brutalist icon that is the Park Hill estate. The Scottish Queen hosted a temporary programme of exhibitions, events and residencies in partnership with a range of artists and organisations from across Sheffield supported by S1 Artspace.

The programme included:

APR:  Overlooked: Mandy Payne, Sean Williams, Jane Walker, Andy Cropper and Conor Rogers
MAY:  Park Hill Art School: Sheffield Hallam University
JUN:  Sheffield Design Week and Peddler Food Festival
JUN:  Sheffield College’s Art and Design Show
AUG:  Terminus: David Cotterell with Ron Wright and Michael Day
SEP:   Peter Doig | There is no wealth but life
NOV:  Park Hill Reimagined: Imagine Project by the University of Sheffield and Museums Sheffield

 

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2015 Michael Fullerton | Prussian Blue

S1 Artspace presents a new commissioned exhibition by Glasgow-based artist Michael Fullerton. Prussian Blue is a major new body of work that will unfold over three exhibitions in 2015 commencing at S1 Artspace this spring, which will subsequently be presented at Carl Freedman Gallery, London and the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, Edinburgh.

In 2014, S1 Artspace invited Fullerton to work with the city’s historical collection at Museums Sheffield whilst developing this new series of works. Continually drawn to the aesthetics, politics and social history embodied in portraiture, Fullerton has selected a number of eighteenth and nineteenth century portraits specifically for their aesthetic virtues to show alongside his new body of work. This includes portraits by Sir William Beechey, Charles Brocky, William Etty, Jean-Baptiste Greuze and Sir Thomas Lawrence.

Fullerton’s new work examines the power of aesthetic beauty, the recording of history and the relationship between painting and its social and historical significance. It expands the artist’s ongoing exploration of the social and civic relevance of art – and in particular painting in an age of information and mass media circulation. For Fullerton, painting is political, the more effective its seductiveness, the more power it embodies. He frequently refers to Thomas Gainsborough as a major influence who, through his command of aesthetics, gained access to the political elite, and in doing so, the means to represent the living face of the country’s most powerful figures for posterity.

Although Fullerton’s portraits directly reference Gainsborough’s aesthetic, it is the politics at play within these paintings that the artist is more purposefully trying to evoke. His paintings challenge many of the traditional assumptions of portraiture and ask what kinds of people are portrayed, how much information can a painting store about its subject and how might representation be related to power.

The historical paintings in the exhibition share a similar position. Sir Thomas Lawrence had a clientele that encompassed the length and breadth of the aristocracy, James Sant was appointed official portraitist to Queen Victoria and the Royal Family in 1872, and Sir William Beechey was appointed portraitist to Queen Charlotte in 1793 and was knighted in recognition of his most ambitious painting, the huge Review of the Horse Guard with King George III and the Prince of Wales.

The title of the exhibition Prussian Blue is significant on a number of levels. A famously complex compound, it was one of the first synthetic pigments ever created and is the traditional ‘blue’ in blueprints. It – poignantly – also has a social and historical significance in that Prussian blue was the by-product of the deployment of Zyklon B gas – the gas used in the second world war concentration camps in Poland (the fumigation and gas chambers to this day are stained a Prussian blue colour). The way that colour – which is supposedly apolitical in nature – can be invested with social and political significance is of particular interest to Fullerton.

Central to the exhibition is a series of oil painted portraits of women from advertisements in Vogue magazine that explore the economy and circulation of aesthetic beauty. Painted using a grisaille technique (monochrome under-painting) these paintings reference a revered historical painting method and allow the artist to use coloured pigments to paint ‘make-up’ over the models’ faces.

Condé Nast – the global media company, who own some of the world’s best-known media brands, launched in 1909 with the purchase of Vogue magazine. Widely considered to be the originators of the ‘class publication’ a type of magazine focused on a particular social group – what they themselves describe as the ‘world’s most influential audiences’. The advertisements in Vogue have a very specific economic purpose, which within the context of advertisements by Estée Lauder (the mass media arbiter of beauty as owner of 32 major beauty brands) have an explicit commercial agenda. Since 2001, the Lauder Company has been at the centre of a boycott campaign due to the financing of political activities by Robert Lauder, the son of Estée Lauder.

As a viewer, Michael Fullerton’s work raises a number of issues and questions. He asks us to challenge our position about how we situate ourselves in relation to a broader cultural, political and social context and encourages us to look beyond the surface value of an image, by asking who owns this image and whom does it serve?

S1 Artspace and Michael Fullerton would like to thank Sian Brown, Liz Waring, Kirstie Hamilton and Hannah Brignell (Museums Sheffield); Carl Freedman, Robert Diament and Kathryn Braganza (Carl Freedman Gallery); Julie-Ann Delaney and Simon Groom (Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art); Rupert Wood and Libby Pell (APG Works) and all the lenders.

The exhibition Prussian Blue – Michael Fullerton has been generously supported by The Elephant Trust and Arts Council England’s Grants for the Arts programme.

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2015 S1 Bursary Holders: 2015

S1 Introduces features new work by S1′s Bursary Artists Sam Blackwood, Stephen Milligan, Bimal Rana and Chris Shaw.

Since completing their BA at Sheffield Hallam University, the four artists were selected to take part in S1 Artspace’s professional development programme which provides subsidised studio and mentoring by S1’s studio artists, staff and S1 Associates. The programme is specifically aimed at supporting Fine Art graduates from Sheffield Hallam by providing a valuable opportunity for younger artists to experience and benefit from working in a professional artist studio complex during the later stages of their fine art degree and into the preliminary stages of professional practice.

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2014 Till the stars turn cold

S1 Artspace is pleased to present an exhibition of new commissions and recent works by six contemporary artists curated by Kyla McDonald and Laura McLean-Ferris as part of the S1 Invites series. Till the stars turn cold features work by artists who display an interest in objects and bodies that carry speech: Tyler Coburn (USA), Michael Dean (UK), Kathryn Elkin (UK), Josh Kline (USA), Megan Rooney (CA), and Cally Spooner (UK).

In a pivotal scene from Stanley Donen and Gene Kelly’s 1952 film Singin’ in the Rain, set during Hollywood’s transition from silent movies to talking pictures in the late 1920s, the rich warm vocal tones of aspiring actress Kathy Selden (Debbie Reynolds) are dubbed onto footage of the beautiful, yet shrill, star actress Lina Lamonte (Jean Hagen), as she delivers her line “our love will last till the stars turn cold”. The stitching of the perfect voice onto perfect image has certain shades of Pygmalion, or even Frankenstein. What is certainly clear, however, is that under the new recording regime, Lamonte has been tested and found wanting. Love triangles and musical numbers aside, the narrative is driven by a moment of crisis in which humans scramble to adjust their speech to suit a new market created by technological development.

Till the stars turn cold brings together the work of six artists who are attentive to the different ways voices travel through objects, bodies, mechanisms, and situations, and to the moments of failure, breakage and slippage that reveal structural conceits and rules. Each work variously highlights the ways in which acts of speech, public and private, respond to the particular pressures of their time. A number of historically popular figures and celebrities from mass media – who while granted a public voice often struggle with the weight of carrying it – are present throughout the show. The exhibition’s focus is on irksome moments when language is disrupted: masks slip, tapes skip, words are misspelled or illegible, tongues misbehave and sentences, unfinished, are left hanging in the air. Poetic logic, confused speech, and failure to perform offer a sense of momentarily breaking with protocol, particularly in today’s over-narrated present.

This exhibition is a partnership project with Glasgow Sculpture Studios where it will tour 24 Jan – 14 Mar 2015. It has been generously supported by Arts Council England, The Elephant Trust and The Henry Moore Foundation.

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2014 Three Act Structure

Three Act Structure brings together the work of S1’s Studio artists across three evolving exhibitions in the gallery over the space of nine weeks. For this project the fifteen artists have come together to re-examine the S1 Members’ show and to test out conceptual relationships inherent within the context of a group exhibition and outside the established parameters of S1’s open-plan studios. S1 artists Natalie Finnemore and David McLeavy have been commissioned for their first major collaborative work to produce a large-scale and adjustable structure that acts as a device to pull together and present new work by all the artists, including work made specifically for Three Act Structure.

The three act structure is a model commonly used in writing and storytelling that divides its narrative into three parts: the beginning, or Setup; middle, the Confrontation and the ending or Resolution.

In Act One we are introduced to the main protagonist (the modular Structure); its relationship to the other characters (the artworks); and the world in which it lives (the gallery). This exposition establishes the exhibition framework, creating a context through which each of the iterations will be read.

In Act Two the relationship between the Structure and the co-protagonists is expanded, works are re-installed with new works added, and the Structure is transformed.

The culmination presents itself in Act Three with all characters appearing simultaneously on set in their final encounter. Once again, there is a change of cast with all the artists now represented; relationships are re-visited and evaluated with the Structure adopting its final form for the Act of Resolution.

The model of the Three Act Structure allows for a re-casting to take place throughout the duration of the exhibition with visitors invited to return for the presentation of each act.

S1’s Studio artists have a diverse and distinctive approach to contemporary art practice and this exhibition therefore embraces a wide range of media including film, video and photography to installation, sculpture and performance.

Established in 1995, S1 Artspace has consistently provided affordable studio space in central Sheffield for contemporary artists at varying stages in their careers, from recent graduates to established artists working at an international level. The open-plan and shared studios allow artists to continually develop their practice in an environment that encourages and supports dialogue about contemporary art and the free exchange of ideas.

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2014 Simon Bill

S1 Artspace has commissioned artist Simon Bill to create a major new work for the public realm, Irises, in which he transforms the seven archways of Sheffield’s iconic former Leadmill Tram Depot into a space for presenting a series of ambitious large-scale Op Art paintings.

Irises explores the physical boundaries of the neon spreading illusion and its ability to fool us. This painting commission continues Bill’s interrogation of our understanding about what we are actually seeing and his endeavour to comprehend more broadly how vision operates. This investigation has developed from a long-standing fascination with Wittgenstein’s ‘duck-rabbit’, an established motif of cognitive indeterminacy that has appeared several times in Bill’s renowned paintings and sculptural works.

Drawing on a wide range of sources including history, popular culture, music, philosophy, warfare, literature, cookery, comedy and science – Bill’s chosen subjects are succinctly brought together by the employment of oval shaped canvasses constructed from MDF board and polystyrene, a format he has continued to work with for over twenty years. This new series of paintings creates the space for Bill to further examine the workings of the visual brain through the phenomenon of neon spreading. The psychologist Richard Gregory has defined Optical Illusions as ‘systematic deviations from fact’ – in other words, we are seeing something we know is not right, however, this misperception is the reliable outcome from a particular set of circumstances that the brain has interpreted in a reasoned way.

In the neon spreading illusion, first described by Dario Varin from the University of Milan in 1971, the coloured spokes at the intersection of an otherwise monochromatic grid appear to glow, as if they are bright neon, as opposed to regular coloured paint. The neon colour then appears to flow out of the intersections, producing the impression of a delicately tinted transparent veil hovering just above the pattern.

Please note: this project is presented at the Leadmill Tram Depot, Shoreham Street, Sheffield and not at S1′s gallery.

This commission has been supported by Alder King Property Consultants and The UNITE GROUP plc.

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2014 S1 Introduces

S1 Introduces presents new work by S1 Studio Bursary Holders: Kristian Barnes, Ashley Holmes, Mark Riddington and Laura Twigg.

Since completing their BA at Sheffield Hallam University, the four artists were selected to take part in S1 Artspace’s professional development programme which provides subsidised studio and mentoring by S1’s studio artists, staff and S1 Associates. The programme is specifically aimed at supporting Fine Art graduates from Sheffield Hallam by providing a valuable opportunity for younger artists to experience and benefit from working in a professional artist studio complex during the later stages of their fine art degree and into the preliminary stages of professional practice.

The exhibition brings together artistic practice that features a diverse and distinctive set of references including Grime music, architectural geometry, mass produced design objects and casting processes. S1 Introduces provides the bursary holders with an opportunity to showcase their most recent artworks, allowing the exhibition to act as a testing ground for the development and presentation of new concepts and ideas.

Kristian Barnes was born in Warrington, 1990 and works primarily in sculpture. His recent work has examined the construction of design objects, with particular reference to the quality of the materials used. Since the reformation of the design world and the popularisation of brands such as Ikea, there has been a huge shift towards employing cheaper materials and disguising their inherent quality by using processes such as lamination and veneers. The works on display at S1 employ these same materials and processes, producing sculptures which present a distorted sense of the familiar through their ambiguous resemblance to furniture.

Grime emerged out of London in the early 2000s and is a music genre that borrows ideas from a variety of both cultural and musical styles. These sources are then mashed together to produce a unique and energetic, often confrontational musical output. In S1 Introduces, Ashley Holmes, born Luton, 1990, presents sculpture and video installations which adopt a similar model, re-appropriating ideas and aesthetics from other periods in art history including the Baroque.

Mark Riddington was born in Doncaster, 1989 and moved to Sheffield in 2010. His recent works utilise traditional methods such as casting to capture the subtleties of the making process. In his plaster forms, the paper vessels in which the works are cast create a warped and buckled surface, saturated with the colour of the papers’ dye; with the process of peeling the permeable paper away from the surface creating an effect of decomposition or decay.

Born in 1990, Laura Twigg’s practice is informed by her upbringing in the centre of pottery production, Stoke-on-Trent and examines the relationship between the artisan and an environment of mass production. Following a residency at the Spode Pottery factory in 2012, her most recent works explore the architecture of the industrial environment, and in particular, the geometric forms which appear there. Twigg then utilises these forms in compositions that combine both ready-made and handcrafted objects to create formal installations.

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2013 Elena Bajo | Ryan Mosley | Katja Strunz

The exhibition Zero Hours - part of this years Art Sheffield 2013 Festival – starts with a single work, Joseph Beuys’ Wirtschaftswerte (Economic Values), 1980. Literally a peering over the wall into another economic, social and political world, the work opens up questions about systems, value and art. How do we imagine new ways of living and working from inside our own socio-economic systems? What legacies of our industrial past are shaping our future? What are the systems of value that we rely on?

Zero Hours presents work by Edgar Arceneaux, Elena Bajo, Zoe Beloff, Joseph Beuys, Ben Cain, Garth Evans, Forced Entertainment, The Grantchester Pottery, Urs Fischer, Mikhail Karikis, Ryan Mosley, David Riff and Dmitry Gutov, Oliver Ressler and Katja Strunz at locations across the city including Bloc ProjectsGraves GalleryS1 ArtspaceSheffield Institute of Arts GallerySite Gallery and off-site venues.

At S1 Artspace we present new and existing works by Elena Bajo, Ryan Mosley and Katja Strunz.

Elena Bajo describes her practice as concept generated and research-based. She develops her work through engagement with a given context, often drawing from events, texts and cultural phenomena of social and political significance. From Illusion, Delusion, Allusion (Studies for a Movement at 66 RPM) The Order of Anarchy (2011), in which three dancers perform sequences generated through an interpretation of an anarchist manifesto, to Reconstructing the Common (2012), a series of sculptural works created from glass factory rejects and scrapped aluminium frames, Bajo’s works often develop with elements of improvisation, chance and the translation of ideas across art forms by dancers, musicians and other creative practitioners.

Aesthetically formal, Bajo’s sculptural and two dimensional works appear as props or remnants of a previously undertaken process or activity, containing traces of the labour employed in their production. Her new work, created for Art Sheffield 2013, has developed through an interest in the city’s industrial past and present, and the changing ideas and meanings attached to time and making evoked in its transition throughout the 20th Century. Bajo brings together object and material fragments that subtly reference a complex set of conditions and social relations.

Ryan Mosley’s large-scale paintings imbue a sense of the familiar in an otherwise unfamiliar vision of the world. Through composition, colour, character and motif, Mosley draws from a rich history of notable great painters to create enigmatic compositions where past and present merge.

Although resolutely contemporary, traces of Degas, Titian and Toulouse-Lautrec can be seen in Mosley’s paintings that present a decisively darker vision of our time. Crossing cultures while suggesting specific tales, his paintings pull together predominantly male characters inspired by folk law, the Wild West and the South Seas. Shadowy figures appear to perform in scenes that subtly portray distinctions of class, gender and authority through rituals, gestures and stance. Obscure and enigmatic, theatrical and somewhat absurd, Mosley’s paintings chime with the world in which we live, confusing our sense of what is now and more poignantly what is to come.

Katja Strunz’s sculptural works reverberate the past as they bear traces of lived experience; a past that has informed and shaped their present being. Concerned with the resonances of history and time passing – what the artist terms ‘aftermath’ – Katja Strunz creates sculptures from found and recycled materials that attempt to capture a moment in time; a present moment so inextricably linked to its past that will undoubtedly shape its future.

Redundant clock faces salvaged from a seemingly more affluent and buoyant time feature regularly in Strunz’ work. Yet stripped of their primary function of marking the passage of time, these objects fall short in their attempt to halt time as their faded and decaying surfaces continue to erode and confront their own inevitable demise.

Although Strunz constructs sculptures in a manner that makes reference to Minimalism, she rejects the precise finish duly associated in favour of a more immediate handmade presence. In her wall-based relief sculpture, Fall Into Space (2007), dented and weatherworn sheet metal cubes appear suspended mid-performance as they cascade from ceiling to floor. Retreating from the forward-thinking optimism of her constructivist predecessors, Strunz’ work suggests a complex and uncertain position as what she unearths bears signs of the grave.

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2013 Nicolas Deshayes

Crude Oil is an exhibition of new commissioned work by sculptor Nicolas Deshayes.

Presented alongside is a personal selection of historical works from the Leeds Museums and Galleries sculpture collection including works by Hermon Cawthra, Geoffrey Clarke, Frank Dobson, Jacob Epstein, John Farnham, George Frampton and Henry Moore.

In 2012 Nicolas Deshayes was commissioned to develop a new series of works following a period of research at the Henry Moore Institute Archive and Leeds Museums and Galleries sculpture collection. The exhibition Crude Oil brings together a selection of sculpture from the late 19th and 20th century that has influenced the development of Deshayes’ new work. It also marks the first occasion that S1 Artspace has presented a number of historical works as part of its exhibitions programme.

Drawn to materials due to their synthetic connotations Deshayes selects processes that exist in the manufacturing world for the purpose of prototyping, packaging and reproduction. From these he creates and moulds organic forms and surfaces which relate directly to the natural world and more specifically the human body.

The exhibition Crude Oil includes five new works each displaying a form of repetition or pattern; a reference to the mechanical reproduction processes adopted by manufacturers across the world. Although Deshayes does not commonly represent the body in a figurative manner – the historical works he’s selected occupy this role and act as protagonists throughout the exhibition – the new works each suggest a relationship to the viewer’s body through subtle choices the artist has made about height, position and arrangement.

The title of the exhibition Crude Oil refers to the direct source of materials used in Deshayes’ practice – a fossil fuel created naturally from decaying plants and animals living in ancient seas millions of years ago. Through the oil refining process liquid styrene is formed – the base material for most plastics and polystyrene – a non-biodegradable substance at odds with its organic origins.

Across the gallery connections are drawn between natural occurrences and seemingly un-natural conclusions. A common thread running throughout all works in the exhibition is a sense of emergence. Objects, characters and patterns appear to break through malleable skin-like surfaces. Backgrounds and foregrounds fuse, objects emerge from solid matter and figures appear from ghostly backgrounds and tabletops.

An arrangement of anodised aluminium tables plays host to two distinctive bronze busts; Jacob Epstein’s Bust of George Black (1942) and Frank Dobson’s Bust of Margaret Rawlings (1936). The textured green and black surface of these patinated busts share physical resemblances to the victims caught in Mount Vesuvius’ deadly eruption of volcanic ash as well as rescued birds and sea life following an oil spill disaster. The iridescent surface of the anodised tabletops is heightened by a glossy lacquer that mirrors these figures in its surface as if adrift at sea.

References to the ocean can also be seen in Hermon Cawthra’s stone-carved Architectural Panel: Beach Scene (c.1910). This simple scene of two individuals playing at the beach acts as a subtle reminder of the land and sea, the source of most crude oil. The figures fluidic hair and surface of the sea are carved in the same repeating motif of waves and curves; a pattern recognisable in Deshayes’ new cast aluminium reliefs that hang from a sequence of vertical poles dividing the exhibition space. The undulating surface of these ‘organic’ forms makes reference to both the simulated nature of computer modelling software and the natural shifts that occur in the seabed’s surface.

Close by is a series of plaster maquettes by Geoffrey Clarke for the Extraction and Refining of Oil (1956) – a vast aluminium mural in 131 parts commissioned by Castrol for its London head quarters, which tells the story of how oil is developed. The finished mural was produced using a sand casting process that Deshayes adopted to create his own aluminium reliefs. Displayed as a fragmented linear arrangement across the vertical poles, they also suggest a narrative to be read.

Akin to Cawthra’s Beach Scene (c.1910) George Frampton’s St. Cristina (1889-93) shares a similar surface or ‘skin’ to several of Deshayes’ new vacuum-formed works, including a floor-based arrangement of opalescent octopi reliefs – an amorphous sea creature that releases its own black substance – creating parallels with the seabed’s release of crude oil. The fossil like nature of these captured creatures and materials can also be likened to Henry Moore’s anthropomorphic flintstone reliefs in Maquettes for a sculpture at the English Electric Company Headquarters on the Strand, London (1954).

A large-scale frieze composed of vacuum-formed panels suggests a capturing of modern life or moment in time. Inspired by the sculptor Gilbert Bayes whilst researching the archives, his remarkable frieze, Pottery through the Ages (1939) – on permanent display at the V&A Museum – depicts the various stages of ceramic production. Referencing the repetition of feet within numerous works of this nature, Deshayes calls upon a more modern industrial foot, the ubiquitous plastic moulded shoe branded Crocs. The ultimate chefs’ shoe, Crocs bring with them associations of the sea, industry and hygiene. The epitome of industrial reproduction, these particular Crocs – fakes purchased from a value shoe shop – reveal their imperfections and mass-produced origins.

Through a confrontation of the supposedly natural and un-natural Deshayes distorts our sense and recognition of the everyday. By operating at the transitional state between liquid and solid – the moment where one state slips from one category to another – his work provokes questions about our response to images and material that can rapidly transform from seduction to repulsion. The glossy aesthetic demanded of the 21st century through publishing, design, beauty and consumption has squeezed the gap between these two states so tightly it has now become hard to distinguish one from the other.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS:  S1 Artspace and the artist would like to thank Sophie Raikes, Lisa Le Feuvre, Claire Mayoh and Jackie Howson (Henry Moore Institute, Leeds), Rebecca Herman and Jen Kaines (Leeds Museums and Galleries), Jonathan Viner and Emma Astner (Jonathan Viner Gallery), Leighton Carr, Judith Le Grove, David Scarborough and Paul Louis for their support and advice.

The exhibition Crude Oil by Nicolas Deshayes has been generously supported by The Fluxus Fund, The Elephant Trust and Arts Council England’s Grants for the Arts programme.

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2013 Love in a Cold Climate

With coal seams beneath it and water running through, Sheffield has a surfeit of energy. Historically this energy has produced stainless steel and electro pop. Love in a Cold Climate reflects the latent energies within the city – both industrial and social.

Works include post-Vorticist lithographs from 1919 by Edward Wadsworth depicting slag waste in the West Midlands and agit-prop designs by Jamie Reid produced during the 1973 Miner’s Strike and for the 1987 General Election. Reid’s posters were produced, respectively, to encourage people to support the miners by wasting rather than conserving electricity and on behalf of the Labour Party associated Red Wedge campaign.

Liam Gillick’s Discussion Island Preparation Zone is a residue left from mopping the gallery floor with a cocktail of vodka and glitter. The work might appear as a trace of David Bowie’s Ziggy Stardust concert tour that is documented with a wall drawing by Scott King. The tour took Bowie to 43 venues across Britain in the summer of 1973 including Sheffield’s City Hall.

The exhibition is illuminated with works by Anna Barham and Mandla Reuter that both methodically work through different lighting configurations in abstract exercises.

Hannah Rickards’, Some people say they think it sounds like aluminium foil but aluminium foil to me is not the sound, 2007, is an installation that follows a series of interviews with people who have perceived the Northern Lights as being accompanied by a sound.

The title of the exhibition Love in a Cold Climate is taken from George Orwell’s ‘Keep the Aspidistra Flying’, 1936. The phrase was later adopted as the title of Nancy Mitford’s novel of 1949.

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2012 S1 Bursary Holders: 2012

To mark the completion of the S1 Studio Bursary Programme 2012, S1 Artspace is pleased to announce S1 INTRODUCES, an exhibition presenting new work by four recent BA Fine Art graduates from Sheffield Hallam University: Ruth Herbert, Hannah Shaw, Ruth Wilde and Jessica Wong. The exhibition includes drawing, sculpture, painting and installation.

The four students were selected to take part in S1 Artspace’s professional development scheme earlier this year and have been involved in a number of mentoring sessions and group crits with S1 Artspace studio-holders and associated artists including Sarah Staton, James Clarkson & Pavel Pys.

The S1 Studio Bursary Programme is specifically aimed at supporting graduating Fine Art students at Sheffield Hallam University by providing a valuable opportunity for younger artists to experience and benefit from working in a professional artist studio complex during the later stages of their fine art programme and into the preliminary stages of professional practice.

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2012 Melissa Gordon | Emily Musgrave | Jessica Warboys

The Parallax Curtain brings together newly commissioned and existing works including sculpture, painting, performance and video, by three British-based artists, Melissa Gordon, Emily Musgrave and Jessica Warboys.

The title of the exhibition references both a former work by Melissa Gordon [Parallax Curtain, 2006] and the publication The Parallax View [2006] by Slovenian philosopher Slavoj Žižek. A parallax effect describes the phenomena whereby the world and objects around us appear displaced, unfamiliar or changed when viewed from a different position. It is a way of looking from two lines of sight or two opposing points of view – both literally and philosophically. A form of expanded perception, a parallax reveals multiple perspectives in continual flux which in turn create limitless layers of meaning. This concept is invoked by Žižek in The Parallax View and is an approach present in the individual practices of the three artists in this exhibition.

The Parallax Curtain draws together these ideas through the presented works, which, due to each artists’ multiplied approach, share a sense of re-appropriation, renewal and re-presentation. Through extensive research, obsessive cataloguing and process itself, the artists presented in The Parallax Curtain mine the past for forgotten histories and real world events; historical figures; discarded objects with their own silent history; or fictions to retell. Through this process – in addition to a constant editing, collage and layering – resulting works subtlety re-perform these various narratives.

Collectively, the works offer an examination deep within these rediscovered subjects and the promise of revelation, or a drawing back of the curtain. However almost simultaneously, the work implies something hidden, disguised or obscured from view, and any final resolution is playfully deferred. The Parallax Curtain points to theatricality, staging and performance, techniques central to the individual practices of the artists in this exhibition. For Musgrave it is the work that performs, Gordon however invites the viewer to perform with the work, and for Warboys the process of making records a series of performative gestures to be edited within the space they are shown.

Jessica Warboys’ practice is largely developed in the outdoors, utilising the natural landscape as her studio or stage set, and the natural elements as her physical materials. For The Parallax Curtain, Warboys presents a large-scale ‘sea painting’ produced specifically for the gallery. The process of producing these performative paintings is physical and improvised. Each of Warboys’ sea paintings are treated with mineral pigments before and after being plunged into and washed at the seashore. Presented in the gallery as un-stretched canvases and responding directly to the space, the sea paintings retain a trace of the action that took place and the history of their original location. Warboys’ film works are similarly imbued with theatricality and movement. Here, found or crafted objects, and characters invented or borrowed from history create open-ended narratives.

Emily Musgrave’s assemblages present a similarly improvised quality. In her freestanding structures and two-dimensional collages – specifically commissioned for the exhibition – Musgrave utilises found objects and discarded materials, which act as traces of the past, intuitively built up into an archive of personal artistic and material influence. The freestanding structures raise questions of value, permanence and perception, exploring the limitations of materials to act as reliable relics of the past. Musgrave often disguises materials or selects fragments that specifically resemble other more valuable objects, deliberately playing with understanding and obscuring meaning. Through this process her abstract works perform delicate, subtle shifts from one reading to another and back again, poised on the cusp of transformation or collapse. For Musgrave there is no conclusion to an individual work, simply a brief pause before it is demolished, destroyed and reinterpreted into the next composition.

Whereas Musgrave’s work displays a light touch, Melissa Gordon’s work is laden with the weight of history, an abundance of factual information and powerful media imagery reproduced to the point of exhaustion. Collisions (Kent State) is typical of Gordon’s heavily researched installations. Selecting iconic media images from significant moments in Western history, she collects and layers one image on top of the next in a gesture of simultaneous reproduction and erasure. Through their repetition, the images reach abstraction, disabling perception. Taking inspiration from the structure of theatre in the round, a system of gauze and veils are suspended in front of two canvases by kinetic pulleys, which simultaneously reveal and obscure reception.

In contrast, Gordon’s Structure Paintings – based on actual newspaper layouts – source information is obliterated leaving only its frame and format behind. Focusing on the systems through which we receive information themselves, Gordon reduces text and image to pure pattern, denying communication, and leaving only the familiar dot-matrix and grid structures from the printed page.

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2012 Keith Wilson

S1 Artspace is delighted to announce that sculptor Keith Wilson is to commence a two-month residency in the main gallery for the duration of summer 2012 following his relocation to Sheffield this year.

Wilson will be utilising the gallery as both a discussion space, working studio and display space. During the residency, Wilson will be working up the final form of Calendar (2011), a large-scale galvanised steel sculpture, which will be installed in the central space of the gallery. This structure, constructed from multiple cubic units, represents the familiar monthly calendar grid system used for wall planners or as computer applications. The shelf-like units of Calendar present a flexible, permeable form for the temporal display of myriad found or donated objects. Each unit holds the potential to be filled with significant events, appointments and reminders, or simply left empty.

As part of his residency, Wilson will be hosting a series of events, screenings and discussions based on the concerns of the original Unit One group founded in 1933 by artist Paul Nash. Unit One sought to champion British modernism, advocate avant-garde practice and revitalise British art. The group included artists, architects and critics including, Barbara Hepworth, Ben Nicholson, Henry Moore, Edward Wadsworth and Herbert Read. Announcing the group’s formation in 1933, Nash wrote ‘The formation of Unit One is a method of concentrating certain individual forces; a hard defence, a compact wall against the tide, behind which development can proceed and experiment continue’. The Times, 2 June 1933. Following on from the Unit One group, Wilson’s programme of events and discussions will encourage critical discussion among and between artists and other invited participants.

“ I have been attempting to situate the subject as I understand it here in studioland in more dynamic relation to its various institutional and art historical frameworks. When in the studio you are in the present, in the collective space of the subject as it happens. But when you are there socially, you are in a strangely displaced real time, since any such proper work seems unlikely”. Keith Wilson

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2012 A Peculiar Form of Fiction

In collaboration with Sheffield Doc/Fest, S1 Artspace and Site Gallery present A Peculiar Form of Fiction, a screening programme which draws together works from the 1970s onwards by artists who have applied the techniques and tropes of documentary within their work due to its directness, impact and its unstable position in relation to truth.

The artists presented are acutely aware of their own authorship, the awkwardness of looking and the explicit ethical problems of telling a story. As such, these works often deliberately expose their production methods and reveal the artist maker in the narrative. Through avoiding a seemingly ‘objective’ position works such as Battle of Orgreave by Jeremy Deller, Self Made by Gillian Wearing and The Girl Chewing Gum by John Smith implicate the artist as a more than a silent witness.

Hito Steyerl explains her fascination with this form of making work: ‘The perpetual disbelief, the gnawing uncertainty about whether what we see is true, faithful to reality or factual, accompany documentary images as their shadow. This doubt is not a deficiency … but the basic attribute of contemporary documentary images.’

With thanks to all the artists who have generously loaned their work and to the distributors: LUX, sixpackfilm, Shady Lane Productions, Artangel, FACT, Film & Video Umbrella and Cornerhouse.

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2012 S1 Salon 2012

S1 Artspace is pleased to announce the sixth S1 SALON: a new season of artists’ film and video screenings, selected from an international open call by a guest panel.

This spring S1 Artspace presents S1 SALON 2012, three new screenings of work by national and international artists selected by LINDER STERLING [artist]; LISA LE FEUVRE [Head of Sculpture Studies at The Henry Moore Institute, Leeds]; and BEN RIVERS [artist].

The S1 SALON 2012 received submissions from across the world. The selected work includes film and video from 14 artists hailing from Spain, Portugal, Italy, Ireland, The Netherlands, Korea, Hawaii, Peru, USA and the UK. Many of the selected works will be screened for the first time in the UK.

The screenings are divided into two parts; part one presents work selected from the open call and part two, an additional selection of works from each of this year’s guest selectors. Each of the selectors will introduce their personal programmes at the following screenings; LINDER STERLING: 29th March, LISA LE FEUVRE: 5th April and BEN RIVERS: 12th April. All screenings will commence at 6.30pm and conclude at approx. 8.30pm.

Menagerie presented by Linder
29 March | 6.30pm

Part One includes work selected from the open call:
Alex Pearl | Menagerie | 2011
Hyewon Kwon | Untitled # 1 from the series Eight Men Lived in the Room | 2010
Daniel Jacoby | Cuculi | 2011
Laura Buckley | Chroma / Levante | 2011
Daniel Shanken | Blossom | 2011
Sara Bjarland | Take-off | 2010

Part Two presents work selected by Linder:
Anne Severson | Near the Big Chakra | 1971
Fernand Leger | The Girl with the Prefabricated Heart | 1947

Tipping Point selected by Lisa Le Feuvre
5 April | 6.30pm

Part One includes work selected from the open call:
Jessica Sarah Rinland | Nulepsy Attack | 2010
Bruno Ramos | Factory | 2011
Robert Foster | Bucket Dance | 2011
Jenny Baines | Tipping Point | 2009
Daniel Shanken | Rotation | 2011
Jenn Berger | The Orange Bathing Suit | 2009

Part Two presents work selected by Lisa Le Feuvre:
Lis Rhodes | Dresden Dynamo | 1974
Gordon Matta-Clark | Open House | 1972
Derek Jarman | Art of Mirrors | 1973

Ode to the Flaneur presented by Ben Rivers
12 April | 6.30pm

Part One includes work selected from the open call:
Jenny Baines | Untitled (Kokkola) | 2011
Oliver Bancroft | Psara’s Donkey | 2011
Lindsay Foster | Downward Ascension (Ode to the Flâneur) | 2010
Alex Pearl | Thaumatrope | 2011
Jessica Sarah Rinland | Nulepsy | 2010
Francesca Banchelli | Antitesi Popolare | 2008

Part Two presents work selected by Ben Rivers:
Jim Trainor | The Bats | 1999
George Kuchar | Weather Diary #3 | 1988

S1 SALON was established in 2003 to further S1 Artspace’s commitment to new artists and contemporary film and video. As well as providing a platform for artists to present and showcase their work alongside their peers, S1 SALON seeks to establish an international dialogue between artists at all levels. Screening new work alongside archive film, S1 SALON integrates new artists work within the broader history of film and video.

Previous salons have presented work by artists including Beatice Gibson & Alex Waterman, Ming Wong, Neil Beloufa, Duncan Marquiss, James Richards, Klara Liden and Stephen Sutcliffe. The S1 SALON programme has toured venues within the UK and internationally including ICA London, FACT Liverpool, CCA Glasgow, SPIKE ISLAND Bristol, VIVID Birmingham and SMART PROJECT SPACE Amsterdam.

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2012 The Designers Republic

Born before England won the World Cup in Croydon, London’s erstwhile orbital city of the future, Ian studied Philosophy at The University of Sheffield 1979 – 1982. As a designer he is self taught. He declared The Designers Republic™ on Bastille Day 1986 in Sheffield which he dubbed SoYo™ North of Nowhere™.

TDR™’s work is credited with defining the visual language of dance music, electronica and the Playstation gaming generation post-flagship title WipEout. Ian has worked with architects such as Sadar + Vuga & Zaha Hadid, built environment developers like Urban Splash, RREEF & Make, fashion designers such Issey Miyake & Rick Owens, and has developed global branding campaigns, identities and Special Projects for Coca Cola, Sony (including Aibo), The University of Sheffield, Telia, MTV and Nike.

In 1994 Rudy Vanderlans dedicated an entire issue of Emigre Magazine to TDR™. In 1996 TDR™ had their first NYC show at Artists Space. In 2001, their book 3D>2D was the biggest selling UK architecture book. In 2006 Ian was co-curator of Echo City, The British Pavilion at the 10th Venice Biennale for Architecture. From 2009 Ian has been Creative Director for EXD / The Lisbon Biennale and a Brand Consultant for The Gulbenkian Foundation.

In 25 years Ian has lectured to over 75,000 people around the world, had over 25 ‘solo’ TDR™ exhibitions, launched The Peoples Bureau For Consumer Information, The Pho-ku Corporation™, Ten Denk Riots™, Call Down The Thunder™ and Aim Low + M_ss™. He’s had a good time but still not managed to finish THE TDR™ book but OOH-AAH! TDR™ Vol #1 (Appendices Besides Rarities) will be published by Unit Editions to coincide with the KK Outlet show in July 2012.

Ian currently continues to run The Designers Republic™ / Return Power Shift Control™ based in S1 Artspace, and is also Creative Director (Comms) for EXD (The Lisbon Biennale) and The Sheffield International Documentary Film Festival, a patron of Site Gallery, a member of AGI, a writer of columns, educator (running Design Thinking courses at several Universities both inter-nationally and in the UK currently primarily at Manchester School of Art / MMU), a shown artist and when the moon is full, DJs as Pho-Ku Polluted Rockers™.

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The work in the gallery is a conversation between four different pieces: Atoms Vectors Pixels Ghosts™ (Premix), Why To How To Draw A Perfect Circle (Morse), Helloisitmeurlookin4 (Binary) and Autechre’s unreleased randomised sonic structures originally designed for the Ian Anderson / The Designers Republic™ C(H—)ome (+81 / 3) Ginza Graphic Gallery Show (Tokyo 2011).

(1) ATOMS VECTORS PIXEL GHOSTS™ (PREMIX)
(2012, Infinite)
Technology disintegrates the science of ‘what is’ into the coded possibilities of ‘what if?’. Information should be achieved not given. Understanding rather than legibility.

(2) WHY TO HOW TO DRAW A PERFECT CIRCLE (MORSE)
(2010 — 2012, Endless)
A morse-coded sequential conversation between a series of circles originally created for Autechre’s Oversteps album on Warp, inspired by the unintentionally organic feel borne of maths-based computer generated music. Each of the seventy two original circles was hand-drawn / painted with the intention of drawing a perfect circle by human brain / eye / hand. The concept was to examine the relationship between technology and human control — questioning our desire to replicate the supposed perfection of machines as a form of human expression.

(3) HELLOISITMEURLOOKIN4 (BINARY)
(2008 — 2012, Non–stop)
Originally designed for a TDR™ show in NYC as a nine screen loop (with each loop running at a different speed) observing the complexity of multi-voiced conversations creating random / unexpected internal dialogue and communication inspired by almost-overheard half forgotten exchanges. The content of the dialogue looks at the space between what we say and what we mean – the faster loops blurring the lines between suggestion and truth. Helloisitmeurlookin4 (Binary) is a site specific remix for Atoms Vectors Pixels Ghosts™ at S1 Artspace reduced to a two way conversation echoing and engaging with the dialogue in the other pieces.

BE CAREFUL WHAT YOU WISH FOR
(1961 — 2012, Over & Over again)
is an evolving set of micro-stories described by Ian as being ‘found under the carpet, throught he letterbox, behind closed doors, just around the corner, much closer than you think’. What started out as ‘failed attempts to write the one book good everybody has in them’ is still growing into a cut-up collection of around 200 shifting vignettes…

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2012 Jennifer West

S1 Artspace is delighted to announce Aloe Vera & Butter, a solo exhibition of new and recent work by Los Angeles-based artist Jennifer West, her first solo exhibition in a UK public gallery. It includes six new and recent videos presented across two large-scale triptychs, installations that immerse and implicate the viewer within the work.

West approaches filmmaking like an alchemist, experimenting and transforming the surfaces of blank film stock, shot footage, found photographs or off-cuts from Hollywood blockbusters into abstract kaleidoscopes of colour, allusion and direct reference.

Deeply rooted within the history of experimental and more specifically, structural film, West produces camera-less films through a number of processes and actions that reference influential avant-garde artists including, Tony Conrad, Carolee Schneemann, Allan Kaprow, Linda Benglis and Ed Ruscha. As a former student of Mike Kelley and Diana Thater, it was Thater who encouraged West to consider how the form or structure of any artwork can meet the subject or content as they each produce their own meaning.

Working directly onto 16, 35 and 70mm film leader, West subjects the film’s surface to a catalogue of materials, chemicals and substances that she describes as ‘marinades’. These include anything from nail varnish, mascara, pizza and whiskey to cigarette smoke, LSD, lithium and urine. West applies and exposes these substances directly to the film allowing their natural properties to alter the celluloid in unpredictable ways. Strips of film simultaneously undergo processes of destruction such as scraping, cooking, burning, drumming, head-banging and licking; a series of performed assaults and collective gestures delivered by willing participants.

The title of the exhibition, ‘Aloe Vera & Butter’ refers to substances West used to produce ‘Topanga Beach House Film…’ (2008), substances commonly believed to help burns. Based on a childhood story the artist was told – but later discovered to be true – in 1980 the local authorities forcibly destroyed all the houses located on Topanga Beach – West’s birthplace and an area that attracted an increasingly artistic and bohemian community. In a final act of resistance before the authorities could destroy the few remaining houses, the residents decided to burn down their own homes. Using found archive photographs, West hole punched the places where the houses were located and applied the ‘soothing’ properties of aloe vera and butter to the images, which naturally left their mark. Frame by frame, the video slowly begins to rev eal the places where the homes were located as West collides the past with the present together with reality and fantasy.

In several of West’s videos, actions or events portrayed or embodied within source or shot footage, including – ‘Dawn Surf Jellybowl Film…’ 2011 – are directly repeated on the celluloid to permeate the film with the qualities, substances and physical actions the film simply cannot convey. As West herself describes, “it’s a really disjunctive thing where film goes through a performative process and it becomes the residual marks from that experience”.
One of the most recent videos included in the exhibition ‘Heavy Metal Sharks Calming Jaws Reversal Film…’ 2011, was inspired by one of West’s friends who posted an article online about how a shark trainer from Australia claimed they were calmed by heavy metal music. In response to this, West purchased off-cuts of the infamous ‘Jaws’ blockbuster from eBay and treated the prints directly with actions and materials associated with heavy metal music: black dye enriched with iron, zinc and magnesium was applied directly to the film with hair in a head-banging fashion.

Road-trips, camping, the beach, skating – rites of passage, Hollywood, music, physical improvement; events, images and experiences engrained into the cultural consciousness are dematerialized and reinterpreted by West through her interest in how histories and events are repeated, re-invented and re-interpreted for contemporary society. By combining choice materials, often with physical action, West avoids nostalgia and sentimentality by presenting an alternative take on these well-trodden paths. “I make sure that each work has a tension set up between the subject – the materials and actions – and the images (if there are any) in order to produce a new thought about it or to make contradictorily associations”. Jennifer West

Transferred onto video and projected at an immersive scale, West’s films appear as psychedelic visual trips, literally steeped in traces of lived experience, the material residue of action, history, desire and the popular culture of the Californian West Coast. Despite their abstraction, West’s films are highly referential, even documentary in nature, acting as a record of the specific time, place, location, participants and performative actions involved.
With references to abstract expressionism and the action painting of the 1960s, process rather than product is of central importance to West’s work, a fact supported by the lengthy titles given to each film which act as thorough, even pedantic narrative accompaniments to the work, elucidating the abstract marks onscreen as the films are literally infused by the materials only through their titles.

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2011 S1 Members’ Show 2011

S1 Artspace presents the S1 Members Show 2011, an exhibition of new work by artists based at S1 Studios, Sheffield.

Marking one year into S1’s new premises, the 2011 S1 Members Show brings together fifteen contemporary artists currently based in our studios to present a group exhibition of new work produced over the past year. Several of the artworks on display have been produced specifically for this exhibition.

The S1 Members Show offers audiences an opportunity to encounter artists at the forefront of contemporary art production working within Sheffield today. The exhibition includes a new sound installation by studio holder Haroon Mirza who won the Silver Lion at this year’s Venice Biennale and is currently presenting solo exhibition, I saw square triangle sine at Camden Arts Centre, London. Also included is Roanna Wells, whose intricate hand-stitched silks were selected for the 2011 Jerwood Drawing Prize, and video artist Joseph Cutts whose work is currently being presented at Project 101, The Lab Gallery, New York. James Clarkson is presenting three installations which reinterpret everyday objects into modernist sculptures, Peter Martin projects 1980’s television advertisements into the gallery, spliced with a hypnotic soundscape, and Emily Musgrave’s fragile sculptures employ found objects which masquerade as other materials.

The S1 Members Show provides studio holders with an opportunity to showcase their most current artworks, allowing the exhibition to act as a testing ground for the development and presentation of new concepts and ideas. S1 Studio artists retain a diverse and distinctive approach to contemporary art making. Featuring sculpture, installation, video work, photography, print and painting, this is a diverse exhibition presenting artists at varying stages in their careers from recent graduates to artists emerging on an international stage.

S1 Artspace provides studio space for contemporary artists at varying stages in their careers, from recent graduates to established artists working at an international level. The shared open plan studios allow artists to develop their practice in an environment that supports and encourages dialogue about contemporary art and the free exchange of ideas. S1 Artspace is a nationally recognised organisation committed to supporting and enabling practicing artists in the Yorkshire region to develop new work.

S1 Studio Holders:

James Clarkson explores images and materials assimilated from modernist art and design to produce sculptural works from found materials, bronze, marble and ceramics. His practice incorporates the principals of the Bauhaus school, deconstructing objects into a series of simple painted colours and forms to inform the creation of new works. Selecting and abstracting specific moments of art history James creates a formal looping between the work, himself, and the past. This process looks to impellent a method of working where sculptural objects and their surrounding material are barely distinguishable.

Joseph Cutts takes an increasingly rigid and formalistic approach to the medium of film as he deconstructs and fragments narrative and scene. In this process of stripping down to its most elemental forms, he creates a hypnotic, rhythmical visual experience. Seeking at once to address the viewer’s gaze and produce a pleasure driven visual experience Cutts emphasises the methods of filmic display, highlighting the film’s supporting mechanics and drawing attention to the relationship between media and form.

Jessa Fairbrother’s most recent photographic series consciously references archive photography made in the Salpêtrière Asylum, Paris at the end of the 19th century. These anthropological studies of women who had experienced trauma became central to the construction of a visual language of hysteria. Exploring conceptions of femininity from the Victorian period through to present day Hollywood film, Jessa’s deliberately staged images depict performed aspects of femininity and confront accepted models of behavior.

Natalie Finnemore’s practice progresses through drawing, printmaking, photography and sculptural forms. She creates abstract sculptural installations based on architectural interventions which often draw influence from the structural conventions and nuances of space, line, colour and composition. The work develops through her use of photography and printmaking as an investigative tool in which to construe and consider her environment. Such studies seem to mature and flow seamlessly into the creation of sculptural forms. Through working this way, relationships and interactions are built between works.

Jerome Harrington’s practice is interdisciplinary in nature and often draws from his background in glass making. These explorations are manifest through a wide range of outputs including the production of new objects, short films, critical writing, and projects which involve complex collaborative dialogues and curatorial roles which aim to incorporate the subjective voices of other practitioners into the research.

India Hobson explores a deeply personal relationship with image making related to a fascination with the natural effects of light. She treats photography as a tool in which to create an instant document of her everyday surrounds.

Hannah Knights engages with a meditative process of making. Establishing a muted visual vocabulary the artist subtly alters existing imagery and found photography representative of a recent past. Dissolving their representational elements, Hannah begins a process of transformation, subsuming the original images in pure colour. These works become individual parts of multi-layered installations whose delicate temporary nature exists in a transitional, in-between state.

Peter Martin finds new ways of exploiting information that technology makes readily available. This materialises as a combination of sculptural installations and traditional digital forms. Using source material from television, the Internet and popular music, he re-appropriates particular aspects to find new significance, meaning and modes of understanding.

David McLeavy’s work explores and unravels the possibilities of sculpture and the factors that determine its physicality, or lack thereof, when placed in different environments. His sculptural installations employ a mixture of rough and robust materials with industrial or manufactured associations, juxtaposed with highly finished components that draw reference from modernist design and architecture. The work reacts to the possibilities and limitations of its existence within the gallery environment. Installations are often simultaneously tactile and fragile in appearance.

In his work Haroon Mirza attempts to isolate the perceptual distinctions between noise, sound and music, and explores the possibility of the visual and acoustic as one singular aesthetic form. These ideas are examined through the production of assemblages and sculptural installations made from furniture, household electronics, found or constructed video footage and existing artworks combined to generate audio compositions. The subject matter of his work pivots around socio-cultural systems such as religious faith or club culture and their relationship to music.

Charlotte A Morgan’s practice is concerned with spatial and social conditions, specifically the interplay of history, memory and the imaginary within the architectural and natural landscape, the temporary and mobile in intersecting art and architectural practices, and the influence of ideology upon design. Her work combines art writing, structural propositions, print, archival material, still/moving image and events. Her multifaceted installations combine photography and designed structures with supplementary functions such as storage and presentation, tied with imaginary, dysfunctional or unrealisable elements. The structures often suggest themselves into the histories, presents and possible futures of the contexts for which they are produced.

Emily Musgrave’s work addresses the formal qualities of abstract sculpture and collage. Through experimentation with composition, she tests materials in order to explore their value and substance. Working with both assemblages and two-dimensional collages Emily makes multiple compositions with shifting formal patterns, often using inexpensive fabrics and found artificial materials to imitate luxury or substantiality. Each work develops in such a way that it directs the next, occasionally revealing moments of trial, investigation and progress. Within each work there is a precarious sense of balance that may shift and collapse at any time.

James Price is a multidisciplinary artist working with live art, video and animation. Recent projects have confronted mental states such as boredom, transitional journeys, and conceptions of time. James frequently engages in performative collaboration with other artists and technology, making connections between different positions and materials.

Jade Richardson’s multifarious practice meditates on philosophical ideas of class, pedagogy, meritocracy, and utopias. Her elegantly developed interventions are presented with a deceptive simplicity and are infused with Richardson’s unique sense of humour. Jades artworks amalgamate sociological research with an imaginative perception of the world, often using everyday or readymade objects and text to explore their dialectical tensions, the spaces they occupy and their contexts to construct meaning.

Roanna Wells’ work is an exploration into the multiple processes of mark making and the varied ways of expressing line, form and space. The majority of her work focuses on the relationship between drawing and stitch and she is interested in the similarities and differences between the two, their ability to make solid and permanent a thought or observation, and to create pattern, texture, stillness or movement. Roanna fills space intuitively with spontaneous patterns reflecting the natural order found in the world.

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2011 New Contemporaries 2011

S1 Artspace and Site Gallery are delighted to announce they will be presenting Bloomberg New Contemporaries 2011. Opening on 23 September, and featuring the work of 40 artists across a range of mediums, this exhibition provides a unique opportunity to engage with new practice, ideas and forms.

Established in 1949, New Contemporaries is an important and highly regarded annual initiative that gives art students and recent graduates essential support and recognition at a crucial stage in their development through a high-profile exhibition.

One of only two open exhibitions in the UK, participants are selected by a panel comprising influential art figures including curators, writers and artists often who have themselves previously been a part of New Contemporaries, and a rigorous process that considers the work within a broad cultural context. The selectors for 2011 are Pablo Bronstein, Sarah Jones and Michael Raedecker.

While in its history New Contemporaries has travelled the length and breadth of the country, it hasn’t been in Sheffield since 1993. Now, in a particularly vibrant and active time in the city’s history, it is the perfect host for this show of radical, bold and experimental artforms.

 

About New Contemporaries

Bloomberg New Contemporaries gives people still at, or just after, art school the opportunity to show their work in the context of a professional art gallery. It is important in that it takes the work out of the educational context and into the real.

The relationship between education and art is known, respected, but strangely not recognised enough. As an organisation, Bloomberg New Contemporaries is totally independent of the art school as it allows applicants a democratic chance for the work itself to shine through. Reputations that might otherwise become set within the art school system are able to break out. The annual exhibition is selected in two stages. The first stage is virtual, with selections made from jpegs, DVDs, and written proposals. At the second stage actual physical works are considered and used to make the final selections.

The importance of testing, looking, judging without knowledge of school or age, works both ways. The Selection of selector is, therefore, key. As a principle it is important to convey a very basic sense of possibility to every art-school student or recent graduate considering applying. The selection is made by artists and writers and often a selector will have also been in Bloomberg New Contemporaries a number of years before. The intense and detailed selection process provides the selector the opportunity to consider art in a broad context, in a visual and aural sea far removed from their individual career.

Although there is no limit put on the number of artists to be shown each year, the number chosen from out of over 1,400 applicants has averaged almost uncannily, at around 35. Independent of place, Bloomberg New Contemporaries is an annual exhibition without a building, and has had beneficial relationships with many important galleries. The exhibition travels and this movement, which is an integral part of the structure, means a different relationship to audience and place. The exhibition provides galleries, such as Cornerhouse, Walsall or the ICA, a ready-made exhibition of the very newest and best contemporary art.

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2011 S1 Bursary Holders: 2011

To mark the completion of the S1 Studio Bursary Programme 2011, S1 Artspace is pleased to announce S1 INTRODUCES, a week long exhibition presenting new work by four recent BA Fine Art graduates from Sheffield Hallam University: Natalie Finnemore, Darren Johnson, David McLeavy and Sara Pinfold. The exhibition includes drawing, sculpture, photography and installation.

The four students were selected to take part in S1 Artspace’s professional development scheme earlier this year and have been involved in a number of mentoring sessions and group crits with S1 Artspace studio-holders and associated artists including Simon Bill, James Clarkson & Haroon Mirza.

The S1 Studio Bursary Programme is specifically aimed at supporting graduating Fine Art students at Sheffield Hallam University by providing a valuable opportunity for younger artists to experience and benefit from working in a professional artist studio complex during the later stages of their fine art programme and into the preliminary stages of professional practice.

Natalie Finnemore creates abstract sculptural installations which illustrate her interest in creating architectural interventions. These often draw influence from the structural conventions and nuances of a space, line, colour and composition. The work develops through Natalie’s use of photography and printmaking as an investigative tool in which to construe and consider her environment. Such studies seem to mature and flow seamlessly into the creation of sculptural forms.

Through his paintings Darren Johnson develops abstract images through a system of predetermined rules and methodologies that explore and restrict the levels of artistic control adopted for creating his paintings. Utilising techniques such as cross-hatching and compositional interplay Darren’s paintings fluctuate through slight variants of his systematic technique. This rigorous process combined with a methodical approach creates formal compositions of geometry and colour and delicacy. The beauty in this work lies in the unpredictability of human error – tiny faults and slight spillages of watercolour make the works – which at first appear flawless and mechanical – possess a more human touch.

Sara Pinfold creates sculptures through formal arrangements of domestic and kitsch objects. Her aim is to deconstruct ideas about the function of an object, attempting to re-appropriate an objects capabilities and inherent purpose. Often using soft fabrics and familiar day-to-day objects, Sara’s work evokes a sense of surreal domestic familiarity.

David McLeavy’s sculptural installations are a product of his on-going arrangement of selected sculptural objects and ‘artefacts.’ Each arrangement is carefully considered within its context, redefining the work’s narrative in each specific location. Through the integration of cast objects within his installations, David’s work makes reference to historical practices, examining the way we view and encounter spaces and their apparent visual boundaries.

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2011 A Threepenny Opera

The 1931 film of Bertold Brecht’s The Threepenny Opera exists in two versions. Made by GW Pabst in the early years of sound it was filmed in its first version with a German speaking cast. The set was then reused with a different cast recording the film in French (a planned English version never happened due to budget restraints). What Pabst produces is a film in two formations, which are parallel in their landscape and sets. What becomes interesting however are the slippages and fluctuations in meaning between the two casts and languages, with each film having its own identity, nuance and ambiguity.

The exhibition A Threepenny Opera brings together a set of works that use the idea of staging to articulate a multiplicity of languages and interpretations. The exhibition takes the idea of different languages or casts existing within one set as a way of looking at how certain artworks deal with the idea of the stage or prop as a setting for multiple vocabularies, readings or narratives.
Mark Wallinger’s The Magic of Things (2010) consists of scenes edited chronologically from every episode of the 60s television show Bewitched. The film is made up entirely of the scenes that feature magical acts without people. Wallinger extracts his own narrative that is both within and parallel to that of the original series, a narrative in which the sets themselves become the actors.

Sets becoming participants is also key to Cara Tolmie’s Room Studies (2010). The film presents a series of interior sets that are projected as images on stage while Tolmie performs corresponding texts and sound tracks for each. These layer up a variety of possible interpretations and meanings upon each projected stage set, with the viewer left to weave and infer their own narratives upon the empty sets.

Martin Boyce’s installation Our love like flowers, the rain, the sea, and the hours (2003) stages an urban landscape in which the materials of the industrial world become representational props to suggest a site of social interaction. Boyce constructs a web of associations around these urban sites through a sculptural process of abstraction. These prop like sculptures inhabit the exhibition space as bare, staged representations of the forms of trees and benches that they stand for.

Auditorium (2005) by Claire Hooper exists as a set of ‘frames within frames’. It was shot in the Musée National de Beaux Arts de la Ville de Dun¬kerque, in the 1960’s Modernist auditorium. The action takes place in this empty auditorium, the camera moving and occupying the space, heightening the set like nature of the location. The sound of a slide projector punctuates the film, introducing each new character into the cryptic and seductive interior and entering them into a play of narrative ambiguity. This ambiguity shifts the attention to you as viewer with the realization that the film is staging the audience itself in a complex interplay of seduction and reflexivity.

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2011 Eva Berendes

S1 Artspace is pleased to present a solo exhibition of new commissioned work by the Berlin based artist Eva Berendes. People and Events will be the Decoration presents a series of new sculptures displayed across the gallery against the backdrop of a new large-scale curtain installation in what she refers to as a loose ‘parcours’ of objects. People and Events will be the Decoration is Berendes’ first solo exhibition in a UK public venue.

Eva Berendes’ practice draws on the history and language of abstract painting in conjunction with the application of craft and applied arts. Her works frequently refer to decorative objects usually associated with domestic settings such as curtains, screens, throws and wall hangings. Dominant surfaces are exposed through a subtle process of concealment and disclosure. The making process is uncovered and in doing so Berendes destabilises any rigid understanding of the object. Berendes creates work that simultaneously suggests both simplicity and complexity – it is her integration of both the fine and applied arts that highlights the contradictions, tensions and ultimate validity of this division by bringing them both to the fore.

People and Events will be the Decoration includes a series of new sculptural objects that, in their presentation, resemble the stratified spatial arrangement of a theatrical stage set. This form of presentation underlines the two-dimensional nature of Berendes’ sculpture, which predominantly have both a front and back, closely connecting them to the concept of painting. However, unlike traditional painting, Berendes pays equal consideration to the back of her works and in doing so transforms the relationship of image and image-support into a more symbiotic relationship. The main protagonists in the exhibition, are three intensely coloured freestanding screens fabricated from perforated sheet metal supported by a fine brass framework from the rear. Set against the backdrop of a large silk curtain, these objects face the viewer as they enter the gallery, whilst the ‘back’ of the objects disclose the making and construction process.

Two expansive sculptures assembled from white card suggest architectural fragments or retail display units. These thin temporary like structures with exposed hollow interiors imply a mock-up or prop. Marked out across the surface is a grid drawing that suggests industrial tiles. The site of real ceramic, however, is occupied by found vases and jugs, whose coloured figures have been ‘displayed’ on the sculptures. Whether these structures function as a plinth or stage for the ceramics, or conversely, whether the ceramics are intended as decorative pretext for the sculptures, is left unclear.

The plaster reliefs in the exhibition are purposefully left raw and under-determined revealing their production process by exposing the imprint of the board on which they were cast. Their simplicity recalls fragments of brutalist a rchitecture and forms a discreet counterpoint to the other works in the exhibition.

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2010 FIFTEEN

FIFTEEN is a group exhibition marking 15 years of S1 Artspace

kate allen – simon + tom bloor – theo burt – ross chisholm – chris clarke – katie davies – sean edwards – josephine flynn – babak ghazi – tommy grace – jerome harrington – steve hawley – paul housley – george henry longly – duncan marquiss – haroon mirza – ryan mosely – emily musgrave – steve dutton + percy peacock – james pyman – james richards – florian roithmayr – giles round – matthew smith – sarah staton – graeme stonehouse – shaan syed – rosanna traina – nicole wermers – julie westerman – katy woods

Inhabiting any new premises requires its potential occupant to conduct a survey and inspection of the building to test its condition and value. For an artist-led space, this survey involves more than an assessment of bricks and mortar, it has to be tested in other ways. To mark the inauguration of its new premises and the occasion of its 15 year anniversary, S1 Artspace has invited over 30 artists to survey its new space, to test it out according to the criteria of their specific practices.

The exhibiting artists have already played a key part in S1′s history, they include previous and current studio holders as well as artists who have contributed towards S1′s programme over the last 15 years. The exhibition attempts to address the notion of the survey show: it is not an occasion of looking backwards, a retrospective survey that simply attempts to celebrate what has already been. Rather, the exhibition itself is presented a s a testing space, where selected artists have been invited (back) based on their capacity to both reflect and test out key concerns and issues considered intrinsic to S1′s programming (past, present and future).

Some works act as support structures for presenting the work of other artists, elsewhere collaborative approaches are made more central, where the line between individual and collective practice is wilfully blurred. The critical concerns of the exhibition (and issues relating to artist-led activity more broadly) will be further addressed through a series of talks, panel discussions and events, collectively entitled S1 Assembly. Together the exhibition and events programme operate both as a survey of S1′s (past) activity and for surveying its new premises and the potential therein; where the past is drawn upon as a way to test the conditions of the present, as a point of provocation against which to develop and debate possibilities for future action.

Curated by Louise Hutchinson and George Henry Longly

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2010 S1 Bursary Holders: 2010

To mark the completion of the 2010 S1 Bursary Studio programme, S1 Artspace presents SHOWCASE, two week long exhibitions presenting new work by six recent BA Fine Art graduates from Sheffield Hallam University. James Clarkson, Joe Cutts, Jim Howieson, Peter Martin, Emily Musgrave and Linny Venables were selected for the S1 Bursary Studio programme in January this year, a pilot scheme aimed at providing third year fine art students insight and experience of working within an artist-led studio environment during the final stages of their BA programme, as well as opportunities to benefit from mentoring and professional support. The individual exhibitions include sculpture, sound, video and collage works.

pt 1: James Clarkson | Joe Cutts | Linny Venables

James Clarkson creates exotic sound and sculptural works using electronic circuitry, natural materials and unsophisticated custom built objects. He creates new relationships amongst disparate objects opening up new possibilities for them to engage with the potential of their new fictional settings. Similarly, in his collage works, fragments of found photographs are isolated from their original context, breaking the structural conventions of their usual environment.

In his videos, Joe Cutts captures vistas which at first glance appear static and void of any discernible human presence. Interested in the relationship between photography and video, Cutts creates seemingly still scenes shot from one perspective and slows the footage down to such an extent they reveal subtle movements and almost imperceptible shifts in momentum.

Linny Venables’ uses found, commonplace materials and objects, which she incorporates into new sculptures and groupings of items. Her work centre’s on the transformation of these exhausted materials, ascribing to them new status by emphasising their absurdity, vacuity, or oblique social reference. Her aim is to liberate them from the drudgery of service, allowing them to masquerade outside of their traditional norm.

pt 2: Jim Howieson | Peter Martin | Emily Musgrave

Jim Howison’s works are largely informed by an interest in the language of design and the boundaries that divide an art encounter from that of an everyday experience. Through enquiries into material, form and spatial arrangement, he explores the displacement and reconfiguration of everyday objects and materials through video and sculptural works.

Peter Martin finds new ways of exploiting information that technology makes readily available. This materialises as a combination of sculptural installations and traditional digital forms. Using source material from television, the Internet and popular music, he re-appropriates particular aspects to find new significance, offering a reinterpretation and new mode of understanding.

Emily Musgrave’s work addresses the formal qualities of abstract sculpture by using forms influenced by the subtle details of everyday construction materials. She makes multiple compositions, each piece developing in such a way that it directs the next. Her assemblages and collages explore and test the elasticity and fragility of the materials. The move from studio to exhibition space offers up specific relationships between object and environment, making reference to minimalist values of action, site and material.

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2010 Julika Gittner | Tommy Grace | Duncan Marquiss

S1 Artspace presents Ersatz Objects, a group exhibition of new and existing works by London based artists Julika Gittner, Tommy Grace and Duncan Marquiss. For three years, Gittner, Grace and Marquiss have shared a studio in Hackney Wick, London, yet this will be their first opportunity to formally present their work together. The exhibition explores the nuances of artistic influence within the context of communal production space – akin to the open plan studio culture adopted by S1 Artspace.

The term ersatz denotes a copy or replacement, perhaps made from artificial materials. It implies that a superior original already exists but is missing in this instance. This lack and substitution may be recurring factors in the otherwise disparate work of Gittner, Grace and Marquiss.

Gittner’s interactive sculptures and performances derive from her background in architecture and an interest in its social impact. Despite employing a systematic approach of working to a brief (devised from job descriptions or disability benefits tests) her sculptures have an anthropomorphic pathos in their ramshackle functionality. They appear as lumpen figures whose adapted organs await an absent operator, their recycled materials understudies for more permanent concrete or aluminium.

Grace’s hybridised newspaper collages appear to be born out of his work as a graphic designer yet they reject the communicative function of the printed word and remain stubbornly mute. Lorem Ipsum is a substitute text invented by typesetters to mock-up pages awaiting content. Grace employs this nonsensical ‘dummy’ script to construct impenetrable op-abstracts that defy black and white reading.

Marquiss’ rubbings of his clothes on fabric resemble flattened doppelgangers, frozen in suspended animation. Paralleling Gittner’s sculptures they suggest absent figures or objects endowed with life. Frottage replicates objects as uncanny images but like photography it can exaggerate tones. Marquiss’ black and white 16mm film portrait of Grace in his studio, Grey Test, considers the subtle tones lost in representation. Attempts to catch a spectrum of greys by over and underexposing the film fail to replicate a human grey area.

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2010 Haegue Yang

For Art Sheffield 2010 – Life: A User’s Manual, S1 Artspace has commissioned Berlin based artist Haegue Yang to develop Intro Motion Ditch, a solo presentation of a new installation.

A key concern in Life: A Users Manual is the notion of ‘affect’. Often used interchangeably with the experience of feeling or emotion, it refers more precisely to an intermediate state of being distanced and fully immersed, of perceiving and understanding. It has the potential of transition: when you affect something, you are at the same time opening yourself up to being affected in turn, and in a slightly different way than you might have been the moment before. Affecting or being affected are not two different capacities – they go together.

Intro Motion Ditch evolved from a story Haegue Yang wrote in 2009 titled The Story of a Bear-Lady in a Sand Cave. The text references two existential stories; the first Dangun is the foundation myth of Korea. According to the legend, a tiger and a bear were instructed to eat only garlic and mugwort and remain out of sunlight for 100 days in a cave. The tiger gave up after twenty days, however the bear remained and transformed into a woman who then married the son of heaven and gave birth to Dangun, the forefather of Koreans. The second story Woman in the Dunes is a novel by Kobo Abe – later made into a film by Hiroshi Teshigahara (1964). It tells the story of a young widow forced to live in a wooden house at the bottom of a cavernous ditch in the dunes. There she is faced with the continuous task of shovelling falling sand to maintain her existence. In both stories the place of ‘home’ becomes a site of endurance, routine and act of devotion. In Yang’s story The Story of a Bear-Lady in a Sand Cave, the main character also lives in isolation, in a dark cave with blocked vision. There she diligently shovels out sand to survive, an act closely associated with life, but not necessarily a life without choice, it is a life by choice. As she bails out the sand she creates a wave like pattern, which becomes an aesthetic act as well as an ethical one. It is not understood by the others or adequately communicated between the two and is instead based on a singular devotion for the world.

In Haegue Yang’s installation Intro Motion Ditch, the viewer is invited into a seductive setting in which to encounter a number of objects. Three large geometric triangles divide the space acting as both a device to obscure and reveal. The use of fog machines further act as a tool to conceal as forms submerge and the ground slowly disappears – suggesting a place of fiction or myth. Mass produced household objects such as drying racks, light bulbs, candles and vases are assembled in carefully considered configurations across the gallery. Her carefully interwoven textual structure creates an underlying sense of unease and uncertainty. Yang transmits an existential view on deprivation, vulnerability and recognised human condition, elaborated through an artistic strategy of abstraction and affect.

For Yang, the ‘domestic’ acts as a metaphor for existence. The ‘domestic’ in the more homely or task driven sense is often thought of as a safe protective environment. It is less commonly associated with the tragic or pessimistic. In her book Practicalities (1987), Marguerite Duras – the French writer and film director – reflected on home as a place where people return to commit suicide. This characteristic of the home is a condition subtly explored in Yang’s practice through an implied or precise critique of social and artistic institutions or systems. She mediates a notion of abstraction that is underpinned by a rigorous conceptual focus even if underlying sentiment manifests rather specific narratives. This particular language of abstraction often characterised by sensorial devices, such as moving lights, scent emitters, fans and so on, enable the artist to translate her narrative into physical experiences in space.

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2009 Giles Round

S1 Artspace presents Living Structures, a solo exhibition of new work by Giles Round following a three month residency at S1 this summer.

Faced with the predicament of economic & spatial limitations, builder & architect Ken Isaacs embarked on a pioneering approach to living that developed the foundations for a brief, but remarkable design movement.* “I saw & felt the necessity for major simplifications … to release us all from the high-tech maniacs”.**

An aficionado of modular & green design, Isaacs created a series of economical, simple & practical design solutions called ‘Living Structures’ which included a variety of flexible indoor interiors, transitory architecture & workspaces. His designs embodied lifestyle alternatives such as light living & nomadism. His philosophy embodied simplicity, questioned the need of personal possessions, had low impact on the natural environment & most importantly addressed the meaning of life as a whole.

In 1974, Isaacs detailed all his designs along with instructions in his pre-flatpack manual, How to Build Your Own Living Structures. The exhibition Living Structures by Giles Round takes its title from Isaacs’ designs & adopts his attitude towards light living & design, an approach shared & revisited by the artist.

Following the step-by-step manual, Round built the workbenches to Isaacs’ specifications in order to complete further works in the exhibition. The designs – nomadic in nature – are easy to construct, dismantle & move on, ideas & forms retain a transitional quality & an ability to be transported & re-assembled at ease.

Outmoded or defunct domestic solutions regarded as impractical to contemporary living feature prominently in Round’s work. Living Structures presents a balanced display of allegorical works, situating both high & low cultural forms of production side by side, including furniture, horticulture, ceramics, lighting, typography & textiles.

Reinvestment in the past is central to Round’s practice. He employs the formal language of modernist & minimalist art & design, whilst retaining an ambiguity to past, present & future sources. Specific influences are drawn from pioneers in this field such as Donald Judd, Fred Sandback, Eric Gill & Laszlo Moholy-Nagy.

In 1925, Moholy-Nagy wrote, “All design areas of life are closely interlinked,” a belief shared by both Isaacs & now Round. During the same period as Isaacs move towards a simpler way of life, the art world was revolutionised by artists who reacted against work being influenced by the market by stripping sculptures & paintings down to their basic structures, favouring simplicity over technical skill. Easy categorisations proved difficult, Judd notably rejected the label minimalism to describe his practice & valued the fact that his works avoided easy association & categorisation.

In the early 1970’s Franz West helped redefine sculpture as a social & environmental experience through his Adaptives (Paßstück), small, portable sculptures that co-opted the viewer to complete them. Round draws connections & parallels between specific practitioners & movements that share an ideology & practice that in some ways aims for a better, improved way of life. It suggests a longing for a particular way of living which at times seems unattainable & in some cases obsolete, however Round does not claim to offer an alternative solution. The works in Living Structures offer a number of new propositions where social change and exchange might occur.

*The design movement that emerged as a result of Ken Isaacs was called the Urban Nomad movement; a scattered community of young designers who shared a common image of an emerging highly mobile & sophisticated youth culture which sought liberty through simple technologies of self-sufficiency.

**Ken Isaacs, How to Build Your Own Living Structures, 1974

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2009 Kim Coleman and Jenny Hogarth

Video making has an inherent connection with light. For this exhibition of new commissioned video works, Kim Coleman & Jenny Hogarth focus on making and destroying the effects of light.

Coleman & Hogarth’s collaborative practice places a special emphasis on the participatory and performative aspects of art practice. They work with video and more specifically light, as a malleable and transient material to create immersive installations and sculptural objects. Their performances extend the collaborative relationship further, with audience participation at times essential to their execution, bringing a degree of spontaneity and improvisation to staged events. Relationships between the artificial and the natural are an ongoing area of interest and in Glare this is investigated through an exploration of the performativity of people and technology.

The combination of props and projections in Glare suggest the set of a fashion shoot. By exposing the mechanics of production, the artists allow the exchange between camera and subject to be examined. Objects under the glare of the camera appear to ‘perform’ as attention is drawn to the supporting props disrupting the usual hierarchies that exist between, subject, camera and background.

The choreographed installation of projected videos explore a range of visual effects and processes achieved through the manipulation of mirrors, light, repetitive processes and movement. The artists playfully remind us that even in a seemingly controlled environment, chance, circumstance and interaction all have their part to play.

As with their performances, the exhibition features elements of both the prepared and the unpredicted – disclosure and concealment – allowing ideas and potential from both to emerge. The works circumspectly unravel the relationship between the camera, its subject and its maker through various techniques of disclosure.

Glare demonstrates Coleman & Hogarth’s interest in the interplay between the controlled and the contrived to test if and where elements of either may reside.

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2009 Nina Canell | Torsten Lauschmann | Guy Sherwin | Richard Sides

Featuring work by Nina Canell, Torsten Lauschmann, Guy Sherwin and Richard Sides, Sound Spill investigates the curatorial problem of sound in the context of the group exhibition. Curators rarely address the issue of ‘sound spill’ beyond the simple practicalities, aiming to minimize noise interference between artworks in an attempt to enable an audience to view works individually. The exhibition approaches the artworks and the sound produced by them on a formal level, with their arrangement in the space as a response to their acoustic presence. The sound produced by each work becomes part of a larger, single acoustic composition.

The artworks all feature sound as an element that is intrinsic to their conception but which isn’t their main focus. The artists in the exhibition all share a preoccupation with the production and performance of music, which is reflected in the orchestration of the space.

The Designers Republic were invited to design a title to frame the exhibition based on the phrase “sound spill”. Using ideas similar to those used in their renowned record sleeve design they have produced a typographical abstraction in response to the words. The Designers Republic have been instrumental in the visual representation of experimental music since the early 90s, creating iconic artwork for Warp Records and bands such as Pop Will Eat Itself, Autechre and Aphex Twin.

Canell’s video installation We Lost Wind depicts a saxophone player deep in a Swedish forest. The lone musician, wrapped-up against the winter cold has his saxophone buried – almost surgically grafted – into the cavity of a dead, hollow tree. The occasional blasts of the instrument, which irregularly puncture the otherwise peaceful ambient near-silence of the work, use the hollow tree as a resonator to broadcast the naturally amplified plaintive sound throughout the forest.

Lauschmann is interested in the tension between logic and emotional life and in representing a truthfulness that can be created through any material, form, media or situation. He has a longstanding engagement with sound and music, exploring the mechanics of a diverse range of media and technologies, often using musical instruments and archive video footage in his work.

Sides works with a core of specific values or possibilities from which physical processes are generated, processes often concerned with an object’s relationship to its acoustic environment. His exploration is rooted in mathematics, aesthetics and structural identity and often produces audible objects.

Sherwin has been working with film for over three decades and has extensively investigated the unique qualities of analogue film as a medium, focussing on the relationship between sound, image and film in live performance. His influential experiments into film and sound provide a grounding for the ideas underpinning this exhibition and the processes and methodologies employed by the artists in the show.

Sound Spill was selected from proposals received from S1 Members and Associates as part of the annual open submission.

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2009 S1 Salon 2009

S1 Artspace presents S1 / salon 2009, a new season of artist film and video featuring work from Belgium, France, Germany, UK and USA. The 2009 Salon toured to Outlet, Manchester, VIVID, Birmingham, CCA, Glasgow, Spike Island, Bristol and FACT, Liverpool.

A NOTHING WITH A VENGEANCE
Thu 12 Feb

PART ONE
Neil Beloufa | Kempinski | 2007 | France
Duncan Marquiss | A Nothing With A Vengeance | 2008 | London
Andy Parkman | Neptune | 2008 | London
Oliver Mezger | Bluevale/Whitevale Psalmody | 2008 | London

PART TWO selected by Benjamin Cook
Beatrice Gibson & Alex Waterman| A Necessary Music (A Film About Roosevelt Island New York) | 2008 | USA

 

COMPLEX FINANCIAL INSTRUMENTS
Wed 25 Feb

PART ONE
Jacob Cartwright & Nick Jordan | New Madrid | 2008 | Manchester
Marcin Dudek | Bienal Riposte | 2006 | London
Claire Hope | Complex Financial Instruments (part 1) | 2008 | London
Anna Lucas | Seventh Heaven | 2008 | London
Volker Schreiner | Scope | 2008 | Hannover
Grace Schwindt | The Chair | 2008 | London

PART TWO selected by Anja Kirschner
Megan Fraser | Tour d’Ombres | anamorphic 16mm colour silent | UK Premiere
Lois Rowe | Argument from Design | 2006
Emma Wolukau-Wanambwa | A Short Video About Tate Modern | 2005

 

WE ARE ALL SEPTEMBER 11th
Thu 12 Mar

PART ONE
Jordan Baseman | Jump! | 2006-07 | London
Robb Jamieson | Rebecca Ann Harris | 2007 | London
Tobias Sternberg | Dreams Work | 2007 | London
Alexia de Ville de Goyet | Astral Chorus | 2007 | Brussels
Ming Wong | Fassbinder’s Cleaning Ladies | 2008 | Berlin & Singapore

PART TWO selected by Katy Woods
Jeanette Iljon | That’s Entertainment (The Conjuror’s Assistant) | 1979 | 16mm
James Richards | Active Negative Programme (Screening Version) | 2008 | London

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2008 S1 Members Show 08

This year’s S1 Members’ Show will feature selected new painting by John Burke, sculpture by Haroon Mirza and Jerome Harrington, photography by Charlotte Morgan and video and sound works by Katie Davies. The work has been selected through an open call to the membership by Josephine Flynn, an artist and associate member; Emma Cocker, a writer, Lecturer in Fine Art at Nottingham Trent University and S1 Trustee; and David Martin, Assistant Curator at S1 Artspace.

Katie Davies’ new video and sound works wittily play with the notion of the double or the re-worked copy which has become exhausted and familiarised throughout film and entertainment history. Jerome Harrington’s approach is also a playful one, dealing with the innovation and ingenuity of creating.  John Burke presents an evocative new painting of an empty and neglected interior, which is further echoed in Charlotte Morgan’s single photograph of a void public space in Sheffield city centre. This sense of the familiar with an uneasy undertone is most poignantly apparent in Haroon Mirza’s new sculpture Muezzin, a playful assemblage composed of found materials that generates an hypnotic pulse and humming glow.

To coincide with the opening of the Members’ Show, S1 will also host Open Studios for one evening only. This will be an opportunity to view work by all the current studio holders and to see the new studios following S1’s recent renovations. Current studio holders include John Burke, Katie Davies, Jerome Harrington, Matthew Harrison, Warren Hayes, Haroon Mirza, Charlotte Morgan, Prevett & McArthur, James Price, Elizabeth Savage, Jane Walker and Katy Woods.

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2008 Pil and Galia Kollectiv

To mark the completion of their ten-week residency, S1 Artspace is pleased to announce an exhibition of new work by Pil and Galia Kollectiv.

Pil and Galia Kollectiv’s practice explores the utopian discourses of the twentieth century and the way in which they operate in the context of a changing landscape of creative work and instrumentalised leisure. They are interested in the role of politics and commerce in relation to the paradigms of modernism and the avant garde. They often use choreographed movement and ritual as both an aesthetic and a thematic dimension, reading dada and the Bauhaus backwards through punk and new wave, finding new uses for the failed ideologies of the past.

In Svetlana, Pil and Galia Kollectiv present photographic documentation of rehearsals for an opera that was never performed. Written by Waw Pierogi, founder of the 1980s group Xex, little is known of the opera, only that it was inspired by Svetlana, a character from one of their songs and the daughter of Stalin, who defected from the Soviet Union twice.

A fictional Svetlana and a bogus Leon Theremin – inventor of the eponymous hands-free electronic musical instrument who was later kidnapped by the KGB – inhabit an archive of photographs from a session of stage rehearsals and location shots. Combining Svetlana’s narrative with a conspiracy to create sound weapons, this documentation of theatre workshops, styled after Bauhaus drama class exercises, produces an entirely spurious story of espionage, sonic weaponry and the clash between love and ideology. The performers sport geometric military costumes, brandishing sculptural forms fashioned after the acoustic locators that preceded radar technology. These redundant locators were still kept in use as props, concealing the introduction of radar from the Germans. They perfectly capture the theatricality of military might and suggest the rhetorical force of sound or even the political power of art.

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2008 Make Shift

MAKE/SHIFT explores temporality, impermanence and [dis]location in the context of the built environment and ways in which these elements may inform shifting notions of place. The project, devised and curated by Charlotte A. Morgan, consists of a series of nine one day exhibitions presenting newly developed work by emerging artists and collectives. Based locally and nationally, the exhibiting artists work with sculpture, installation, intervention, participation, text and live performance.

The form and experience of the city is proposed as a complex network of spatial and social structures and relations – both real and imaginary – a perpetually modified whole denying clear definition. MAKE/SHIFT considers elements of the impermanent, the facade, the immediate, the transitory and the sustainable within these structures and relations; the design and construction processes that comprise the urban system and the networks, groups, encounters and communities formed by its inhabitants. The project also re-examines the perception of the individual daily encounter as fixed within the flow of the city’s immediate history, which alludes to, perhaps misleadingly, a locating of the self in relation to the environment.

The enquiry into the transitory aspects of the city is reflected in both the content and structure of the exhibition, which adjusts the arrangements by which the artists use the space and the audience encounter the work. Though the locality of Sheffield is not referenced directly in all of the works, its geography, industry and its current state of regenerative flux provide appropriate references for these considerations, which bear relevance at a time when issues of the global/local are of particular pertinence within many current discourses.

 

ARTISTS

JACK FABIEN

“When I think about Sheffield, I often think about the place aurally. From the sound of its rich musical past to the sound of its current architectural regeneration, this city seems to communicate itself to me through an orchestra of its own functions. Maybe it’s the bowled geography acting like a reverberation chamber, echoing the sound of its own making back in on itself. An Aural Guide to the City of Sheffield is an attempt to provide newcomers to the city with an alternative way to explore and learn about Sheffield with a free tourist booklet and posters highlighting locations of specific aural interest.”

CHRIS CLARKE

Chris Clarke presents work produced during a recent research and development project. The works come from an approach to making work using pre-existing material, imagery and ideas as props which, when put together and according to how they are manipulated and framed, create new meanings in the spaces between them. Clarke is interested in the meanings that can be attached to images and objects – how this changes over time and when shown in a new context. Several new sculptural works will be shown along with drawing and super-8 film, these individual works building up a narrative constructed within the gallery space.

ALEX FARRAR
The University of Sheffield Table Tennis Club 2007-2008

Under the bracket of community and dialogical arts, the ‘Table Tennis Club’ is in one sense a model for selfless artistic investment whilst representing the relationship between art and everyone else after the utopian hysteria of Joseph Beuys.

In a present climate of conflict between art and sport, ‘Sheffield Table Tennis Club’ is a deliberate provocation. The investment of personal savings into a table tennis team pathetically evokes recent redistribution of government funding, the installation itself of an Olympic standard team into an art gallery in a city polarized by two separate cultures is concurrently antagonistic and consolidating.

ROBERT LYE
‘a veil of asterisks over the scene’

Lye exhibits a series of new and related works, anchored by the piece ‘Amongst those left are you’, which takes the form of a set of minutes. Minutes are a typical method in most institutions of documenting a meeting. For the exhibition the viewer is presented with three sets of minutes. The minutes document a conversation between the curator Charlotte A Morgan and Robert Lye discussing the work in ‘a veil of asterisks over the scene’ before its installation.

The conversation is recorded and then played to an Office Manager, the artists mother, and the curator, it is then documented by the three different people, in the standard minute form. The documents show slight differences arising from the differing perspectives of the conversation and the gradual tension builds between the subjective interpretations and the façade of objectivity.

NO FIXED ABODE
dump

A deposit of detritus reflecting our ever developing relationship with our immediate urban environment. These objects act as an archive of our borrowing and looting, of our documentation and also our desires for the future. All the more poignant at a time when this spatial reduction and erection is at the peak of its intensity and is far from resolved.

BEN MOON

Ben Moon presents an invitation to engage with the ‘Cultural Industries Quarter’ that has made a home in and amongst where the old industrial works stood. Many of the workshops that continue to operate share their buildings with Sheffield’s music scene. Portland Works offer rehearsal, administrative and recording spaces for a diverse range of acts, at various stages of musical and professional development.

Drawing on the nature of these spaces whereby standing in the courtyards of these complexes, one is enveloped by the multifarious sounds of local musical talent. The space is depicted by a series of monitors and sounds, encouraging visitors to alter the evolving soundscape.

TRANSIT

With reference to Sheffield City Council’s plans to replace the iconic landmarks that are the cooling towers at Tinsley with a public art work commissioned aim to ‘represent’ Sheffield to its inhabitants and visitors, TRANSIT comes to consider the folly of attempts to bring the rich contexts of a city into a single sculptural form for a singular audience, and the homogenising effects that such generalised representations can bring.

Through long term and varied interactions with Sheffield’s publics, TRANSIT aim to build an archive of places – from architectural and geographical features to transient occurrences and hidden marks – within the city and surrounding suburban areas. Presented as an alternative guide, this interim collection of contributions simultaneously holds personal relevance, shared significance and mundane indifference, reflecting the multiple and ever-changing internal and external factors informing the perception, experience and definition of place.

THOM O’NIONS

“Whenever I find myself confronted by great paintings there is always one aspect that I find inordinately compelling; their frames. I have a great admiration for painters who pay attention to their frames, Whistler once remarked that he designed his frames as carefully as his pictures ‘they form as important a part as any of the rest of my work – carrying on the particular harmony throughout’.

I invariably feel strange when I see paintings reproduced in books. It has to do with the lack of a frame. Frameless the images merge with the books as a whole; the white in the paintings is on the same plane as the white of the pages. There is no mediation between the image and the page, we are not afforded the window, the illusion of the fictional space of painting. During Da Vinci’s lifetime frames were often commissioned before the paintings. I like that.” Thom O’nions

DANIEL SIMPKINS & PENNY WHITEHEAD
Sheffield to Paris in under six hours

Under the weight of globalisation, independent activity is being displaced. The local is being crushed by the global – the regional overwritten by the international. In Sheffield and throughout the UK’s post-industrial North, local governmental regeneration strategies aspire to a new, continental re-branding, driven by pressures to compete on a global stage and fear of parochialism, the ultimate taboo.

Public resources are invested into high culture and the arts to attract private investment and commercial development, causing artists and independent traders alike to lose their place in the city to those able to pay as space becomes an increasingly unaffordable commodity. For one day only S1 Artspace will become a hub for the dissemination of the local and a representation of those faced with displacement.

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2008 Katy Woods

At midnight on March 11th 1864, the Dale Dyke Dam at Bradfield collapsed hurling seven hundred million gallons of water down into the valley below. It swept through the poorer quarter of Sheffield and continued into Doncaster destroying factories mills and homes and killing almost 300 people. The Great Sheffield Flood is considered to be perhaps the worst disaster in Victorian England. It is not a ‘popular’ disaster and is little known outside of Sheffield, yet it was an event that permanently altered the pattern of working life in the city and is firmly embedded in Sheffield folklore.

The Great Sheffield Flood of 1864 provides the focus for a new body of work by Sheffield based artist Katy Woods. For the exhibition, Woods will be showing a new video shot in Sheffield, alongside a series of archive prints. Using a combination of video and archive material, the work reflects on the disaster of 1864, which wiped out a vast part of the city, its homes and industry and considers the rapid urban growth and development occurring in cities across the country.

Landscape and places provide a particular reference point throughout Katy Woods’ practice. Overlooked occurrences, invisible places and forgotten events are made visible through a subtle reframing and emptying out process. Using her own video footage, found images and found text, Woods edits and interlaces her own narrative to create something entirely new.

Selected images from the Collection of Sheffield Libraries.

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2008 Tomma Abts | Deimantas Narkevičius | Nicole Wermers

For ART SHEFFIELD O8, S1 Artspace will feature works by Tomma Abts, Deimantas Narkevičius and Nicole Wermers.

ART SHEFFIELD 08: Yes, No & Other Options is a city-wide contemporary art event taking place within Sheffield’s major galleries, project spaces, temporary venues and public sites. Taking its foundation from a specially commissioned text by art critic Jan Verwoert, this city-wide exhibition addresses the fact that in a post-industrial condition, one particularly pertinent to Sheffield, we have entered into a service culture where we no longer just work, we perform in a perpetual mode of ‘I Can’.

Tomma Abts
Untitled #1 – #7 2007

Parallel to her abstract paintings, last year’s Turner prize-winner Tomma Abts has been continuously developing a series of drawings. In this series of drawings Abts unworks the logic of geometrical structures; through small yet decisive displacements she destabilises the form of seemingly rigid shapes and patterns; as she makes them drift apart, she also allows them to reconfigure themselves in unpredictable constellations. By performatively unworking structures in the process of working on them, Abts reveals their hidden latencies and thereby deconstructs their organisation from the inside out.

Unmaking the logic of systematic structures, in these drawings, therefore is an act, a practice or performance that, in a much wider sense, speaks about how to deal with the structures that determine the way we think, make decisions and experience space and time. Today we live with a dominance of cybernetic structures of thought, decision making and experience (the choice always only being one between 1 and 0, yes and no). When we choose, we choose from menus of options predefined by programmes.

By unworking the systematic logic of this rationality in works – that indeed look at times like cybernetic systems gone out of sync – Abts demonstrates what it means to mess with the programme. Her drawings therefore propose different structures for thought and agency as well as other rhythms to sequence time and organise space, structures that allow for uncharted possibilities to emerge.

Deimantas Narkevičius
Revisiting Solaris 2007

In his films, Deimantas Narkevičius amplifies the echoes in modernity’s ruins. Contrasting documentary footage from places that speak of the recent Soviet past of his home country, Lithuania, with the words that people used and use to assert their beliefs and place in history, he creates complex montages in which the memories inscribed into the images rub up against the rhetorics of historical interpretation. Narkevičius a thereby gives you a strong sense of social reality in a state of historical transition when, upon the arrival of an unclear future, monuments crumble, words lose their meaning but memories linger.

Revisiting Solaris (2007) was shot on the site of a former Soviet television station. Here Narkevičius filmed the Lithuanian actor Donatas Banionis who played the protagonist in Tarkovsky’s iconic 1972 film adaptation of Stanislaw Lem’s novel Solaris. Extracts from the novel appear in subtitles to vintage black & white images of lonely snow-covered forests and cliffs on the Krim. In its faded glory, the station echoes the promise of technological sublime that the Soviet imaginary was built around. Banionis then appears as the vessel of a memory that is not disclosed in words but through his looks and postures, the language of his aged body. Through Lem’s words we finally experience the dream of a future world, that before it ever become real, was already filled with the melancholia that the idyllic landscapes of a lost past today evoke. In this way we re-experience modernity, beyond its exhaustion, in a state of potentiality as time is suspended in the tense of future past.

Nicole Wermers
Double Sand Table 2007

In her collages and sculptures Nicole Wermers isolates the sources of visual fascination in the surfaces of modern design, architecture and commodity culture. Dissociated from their primary context of use and consumption, these visual stimuli are presented as sources of sheer fascination and purpose-free desire. As their original function, however, is still tangible as a more or less latent presence, the dislocation of desire is experienced all the more consciously.

The sculpture Double Sand Table exemplifies this vividly. It consists of two interconnected tables, a hybrid between a piece of modular office furniture, a giant ashtray and an autonomous sculpture. Littered with cigarette butts, the patches of sand still look like a stretch of beach cut out from the landscape, contained in a geometric frame and elevated to table height for practical use.

On the one hand, the table ashtray could surely be seen to mock the aesthetics of modern formalist sculptures (a lot of which would indeed make good ashtrays) as well as the pretence of modernist design to provide elegant forms that only followed function (as if they ever did). On the other hand, however, Wermers’ work goes beyond mockery since she fully embraces the fascination of modern functionalist design even and especially in its warped and exhausted vernacular manifestations.

In much the same way in which smoking celebrates the gesture of elegantly wasting your money, time and health, Wermers rejoices in wasting the assets of functionalism. Because it is precisely at the point of their exhaustion, when their meaning and use is again up for grabs, that these modernist concepts begin to radiate with a strange sense of new potential.

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2007 George Henry Longly

To mark the completion of his ten-week residency, S1 Artspace is pleased to present Mass Damper,  an exhibition of new works by George Henry Longly.

A ‘tuned mass damper’ is a highly engineered structural object or harmonic absorber that is mounted into structures to absorb external vibrations such as noise, high winds and movement. It moves in opposition to resonant frequency oscillations and as a result retains the structural balance and formal order. In the same way, George Henry Longly carefully positions each work with the functional intent to absorb the disturbances they collectively inflict upon one another.

Longly continually questions whether our behavioural responses to materials and structures are innate or socially constructed by trying to expose their primitive origin. For this exhibition, Longly has adopted familiar materials and objects from our environment – materials commonly used to delineate space, structure and use – and stripped them of their utilitarian programme. Rules, systems, habitual ways of looking and norms of behaviour as ascribed by tradition, education and experience, are examined and destabilised by Longly through subtle appropriation. Artex is used to create a temporary ‘painting’ on the wall; vinyl flooring becomes a structural column positioned across the gallery floor and a cement pillar appears to support nothing – the formal qualities of all these materials are accentuated and subverted.

Exterior to the formal qualities of the other material(s) in the exhibition – and perhaps most poignantly – Longly presents some found archive footage from the 1930’s of a large Mussurana snake eating another snake. Images of snakes are commonly regarded as the bearer of some symbolic value. However, subjectivity and context are fundamental if ‘true’ meaning is to be understood. It is this multiple possibility of reasoning and response that seems to offer an approach to the other works in the exhibition, which have no clear or singular reading. For Longly, this is the point in question and instead of generating perplexity, it is the possibility of meaning that is key.

This exhibition toured to International Project Space, Birmingham, Hatton Gallery, Newcastle and Generator Projects, Dundee from 26/09/2008 – 26/04/2009. Throughout the tour, the exhibition continually shifted and evolved as new ideas were introduced and others strands emerged. To mark the tour, S1 Artspace produced a publication, George Henry Longly: Mass Damper featuring documentation of Longly’s solo exhibition at S1 Artspace alongside original source material and including contributions from Louise Hutchinson, Andrew Hunt and Ryan Gander.

With thanks to The Henry Moore Foundation

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2007 Torsten Lauschmann

This summer will see the second Contemporary Art Norwich; a citywide biennial event programmed to coincide with the seventeenth EAST international exhibition at Norwich Gallery and Norwich School of Art & Design.

OUTPOST, one of the four key partners programming this year’s biennial, has invited S1 Artspace along with nine other artist-led spaces from across Europe and the UK to participate in British & European Legs. Each organisation will reflect OUTPOST’s programming approach by presenting the work of a single artist in temporary spaces located in the city’s aging Anglia Square Shopping Centre.

S1 Artspace has invited Glasgow based artist Torsten Lauschmann to develop & present an on-going work, Curtain.

Curtain is an ongoing (sculptural) video piece of computer-generated video based on Conway’s Game of Life mathematical explorations. Visually it resembles a curtain moving slightly from a draft of wind. The movement has for me an interesting balance of being both synthetic and real. It creates an artificial veil suggesting something beyond. It is sculptural but immaterial. For me it is a lure, which suggests a better, brighter world behind it but ultimately reveals itself as a mirage. The piece is modular and can take any shape and length by using multiple video projectors / walls – it becomes as much a sculpture, as a film.” Torsten Lauschmann

Torsten Lauschmannis an artist, filmmaker and live performer who investigates the mechanics of digital processes, software creation and the possibilities they present. Recent projects include solo exhibitions at Parisud, Paris and Mary Mary, Glasgow and performances at the Traverse Theatre Edinburgh. He studied Fine Art Photography at Glasgow School of Art and Media Art at HfG Karlsruhe. Since graduating in 1997 he has lived and worked in Glasgow. Torsten Lauschmann is represented by MaryMary, Glasgow.

S1 Artspace’s participation at Contemporary Art Norwich is generously supported by theThe Elephant Trust & OUTPOST.

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2007 Florian Roithmayr | Shaan Syed | Andy Wake

This group exhibition brings together three young contemporary artists’ whose practices explore liminal spaces and crossed thresholds; the immeasurable gaps that exist between actuality and its fabricated myth – between having and undergoing an experience – between telling a story and living it. The act of re-telling or re-experiencing is always in a constant state of flux – it can never replicate the original – new objects and acts are brought to it and it becomes a mediated encounter. The before and after pivot on an infinite point which is indefinable and intangible; all that remains is a relic of that attempt which shares a past, present and future.

Florian Roithmayr’s work mediates and questions the shifting experience between two dialectical oppositions. The formal constructions and ideals projected in Chinese propaganda imagery from the socialist and communist era are referenced through his work. When these mythic images were held against the backdrop of actuality, they stood empty and a vacuum was created into which the organisational propaganda was filled. Roithmayr creates empty facades which speak of desires to mediate a more perfect world. A sense of hope and failure – of new world order and disillusion – of attempts to hold on to and letting go, all resonate in Roithmayr’s sculptures.

The formal constructions of pop, religious and propaganda imagery – the constructions that enforce the hierarchical relationship between the individual and the spectacle, can also be seen in Shaan Syed’s paintings. Failed attempts to achieve the perfect view during collective spectatorship are explored in his paintings. These attempts to see – to be in the perfect place during mass assembly, inevitably fail as nothing at all can be seen. It is this nothing that becomes the point in question for Syed which he aims to capture through geometric abstract forms. After several years of figurative painting, these paintings are Syed’s attempt to erase the image and allow the paint itself to become the subject.

Also concerned with ideas of collective spectatorship and performer-audience relationships, Andy Wake’s work is formed by a love of Romanticism, the ultimate form of projected imagination, hope, fear and desire. He is also led by a personal connection to the tradition of storytelling, having lived with the traveller and storyteller Duncan Williamson during his formative years. Through drawing, video, performance and sculpture, Wake uses myth and parable alongside horrific interpretations of Romanticism, such as a connection between beauty and terror in attempts to deal with the crossing of psychological or theosophical brinks. At times Wake offers the momentary aftermath or evidence of hermetic endeavour, at others an elusive document of mysterious rite. Fear is guided by desire – at the centre of desire is nothing. Horror works by things not being there, we fill in the blanks from the surrounding imaginative macabre – a void has to be filled and as this occurs it remains osmotic and in perpetual flux.

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2007 S1 Salon 2007

The S1 / Salon returns with a new season of artist film & video programmes from local, national and international artists. For the first time since its inception in 2003, a panel has selected this year’s films from the open call. The selection panel included artists Mark Aerial Waller, Luke Fowler and S1 curator, Louise Hutchinson. During February and March, S1 Artspace will host three screenings presenting over twenty films featuring work from the UK, USA, Germany, Norway, Stockholm and Vienna.


I SEEK YOU
Thu 15 Feb

Part 1: Selected by the panel
Victoria Lucas
Esther Johnson
Ben Callaway
Joseph Hallam

Part 2: Selected by Luke Fowler
Anima-Sound (Ludwig Andus, Rolf Hampe & Alfred Luft)


EVIL IS A TYPE OF EXPERIENCE
Thu 1 Mar

Part 1: Selected by the panel
Tina Willgren
Volker Schreiner
Thomas Østbye
Hilary Koob-Sassen
Heather Phillipson

Part 2: Selected by Mark Aerial Waller
Lis Rhodes
A Cold Draft


SUPERVILLAINS
Thu 15 Mar

Part 1: Selected by the panel
Theo Burt
Dave Griffiths
Cara Marisa Deleon
Roger & Reid
Stephen Bishop

Part 2: Selected by Louise Hutchinson
Raymond Taudin Chabot
Klara Lidén
Manuel Knapp

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2007 Everything is so much bigger than us

S1 Artspace is pleased to present new work by Kate Allen and Lynne Monks & Rebecca Marshall. Collaboratively they use the physical environment as a point from which to begin a purposeful getting lost. By turning their attention to the land they affirm what is beyond the personal and social and acknowledge other places, which are not here quite yet, nor yet, quite visible.

Kate Allen presents large-scale drawings inspired by the Aokigahara forest in Japan. These dense woods have inspired myth and suspicion; the woods are considered the most haunted site in Japan, iron deposits in the soil are said to render compasses useless trapping the unsuspecting on its disorientating floor – but they are perhaps most notorious as a popular site for suicides. Aokigahara was described as “the perfect place to die” in Wataru Tsurumui’s bestselling book The Complete Manual of Suicide. The drawings depict life-size tree trunks, the tops of which disappear off the paper. Stretching from floor to ceiling, Allen’s drawings sparsely lit, almost disappear into the darkness.

Lynne Monks & Rebecca Marshall present a compendium of work inspired by an on-going tale involving happenings that take place on an island. A ‘map’ of the island hangs opposite Allen’s trees and unfolds out over the floor which accompanies a scale model of the island lit with miniature lights.

The setting is imaginative and fanciful yet not devoid of reality. This fairytale like stage set questions what could have been or perhaps more poignantly what could be. The exhibition will only be open from 4 – 7pm so that no natural light will enter the space further contributing to the fantastical nature of the stage set.

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2006 S1 Members Show 2006

S1 Artspace announces its second annual members’ exhibition presenting the work of over twenty Sheffield based artists working at the S1 Artspace studios. 
 
The exhibition is an opportunity to view new work by each studio artist including painting, photography, video, sculpture and installation. Based in the heart of the city, S1 Artspace has for over 10 years fore-fronted contemporary art production within Sheffield. The open plan studios promote social interaction encouraging an exchange of ideas and practices. 
 
The studio holders have worked collaboratively to curate this years members’ show which presents work made during the past year. Artists Rebecca Marshall & Lynne Monks have transformed a previously unused and neglected part of the building to install their new animation Woodpaths in which themes of labour, work and persistence resonate. InGraeme Stonehouse’s new film, past and present S1 studio artists help recall a former elusive studio holder. With the aim of encouraging group cooperation and forging new relationships between individuals, Jerome Harrington has designed a communal weight lifting device andConroy/Sanderson’s new work continues their interest in portraiture and visibility.

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2006 James Pyman

S1 Artspace is pleased to announce an exhibition of new work by James Pyman to mark the completion of his three month residency at S1 Artspace.

James Pyman’s drawings assimilate imagery from photographs, cartoons, genre fiction, anecdotes and music. Large-scale, hazy pencil works narrate momentary daydreams or hallucinations in contoured objects. A large black form rising from the sea could be a tail of a gargantuan whale or an ominous spectral figure. Uncanny doubling occurs as elements in a landscape begin to echo one another or a girl slumped at her desk absent-mindedly draws her mirror image. As with dreams, exotic or fantastical scenes may be followed by a banal situation in which something extraordinary is proposed.

Pyman’s recent work has focused on a series of publication projects employing stylistic conventions from newspaper cartoons, football annuals and children’s books. Working within these genres he has produced artist books that employ imagery as narrative form in fictional biography and illustrative storytelling.

Developing drawings from these, often marginalised, forms of publishing has led to a new project that uses the English folk song tradition and more specifically, the folk revival period as a source. Pyman is interested in the political complexities of drawing on an archive of songwriting documenting centuries of English social history unmediated by its historicisation, the songs acting as an immediate form of dissemination, or oral newspaper. Through a collection of visual and written material this next book will focus on the careers of a group of fictional, folk revival musicians called The Garden Path. The publication will collate drawings of record sleeve artwork, press photographs, newspaper clippings, posters, sheet music, song lyrics and assorted memorabilia, inventing imagery within a self-contained visual world described in the titles, lyrics and artwork crafted by English folk-rock bands such as Fairport Convention and Pentangle. Taking in contextual detail from the folk tradition in regions of England, Scotland and Ireland the publication will map several generations of the band.

The exhibition at S1 will present drawings developed during the residency for a chapter based on Yorkshire, Derbyshire and Humberside.

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2006 Sean Edwards

Sean Edwards begins with a rule, a sequence or pattern. His references detect pure ideas; clean, graphic forms and processes of scientific precision that often become exhausted by the rhythms of reproduction. Ready-made items are incorporated into objects and installations, coupling fragments of mass-production with elements that are re-made or hand-crafted so that the use value of the object becomes emptied out and we are confronted with the notion of an original and the unique quality of each edition.

Bold, candy-stripe designs for carrier bags are faded on low-grade, filmy polythene; monographic logotypes for cardboard boxes vary within a repeat pattern, botched by printing. Edwards’s own objects often attempt a process that mirrors this challenge of replication or invents an aesthetic system for working within the perimeters of the rule. So by an elaborate process of sanding and photocopying an exact facsimile of a pencil replaces the object that has been sanded away (Photocopied Staedtler Noris HB Pencil 2003) or splinters, in a piece of plywood that must be neatly creased by removing all but one of the ply, are carefully filled and coloured by pencil crayon (Lazy Leaning Plywood 2005).

For this exhibition Edwards has visited Sheffield during the World Snooker Championship to record the process of assembling, leveling and clothing the tables at the Crucible Theatre where the tournament is held each year. This video piece will be relayed via a sequence of DVD’s operated by the gallery staff and the image from the monitor will be doubled in a wall that the artist has painted with white gloss. Other works will follow this process of repetition; an apron with an area of printed and accidental pattern (reproduced for the exhibition invite), a series of drawings tracing the negative space in photographs of glamour models from page 3 of The Sun, overlaying shapes by month or by girl. Edwards will adapt the space to respond to his work and the qualities of his work inherent in the visual content of the space itself. Colour from the upper-part of the walls will drop down to the centre boards on one side of the space and against another, unpainted boards will lean with their tops planed level to form a shelf. The works in this exhibition have been commissioned by S1 Artspace. S1 thanks World Snooker and The Crucible Theatre Sheffield for their generous support with this project.

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2006 Emma Barrow | Lisa Castagner | Sophie Woodrow

S1 Artspace presents her private theatre, newly commissioned work by Emma Barrow, Lisa Castagner and Sophie Woodrow.

Emma Barrow’s sculptures are conceived in response to the materials from which they are made, drawing on an inherent property or a feature of a found object. Polystyrene is corroded by aerosols, creases in a disc of cardboard are made firm with resin, a blanket is unravelled to create mossy pockets on the gallery wall. Barrow’s work makes reference to figurative and astral forms playing on a willingness to recognise facial arrangements in abstract compositions whilst delivering metallic colour or volcanic texture at the surface.

Lisa Castagner constructs images of heavily stylized situations, achieving a sense of order, symmetry and perfection associated with fashion photography. Domestic interiors are neutralized to become clinical signifiers producing a serenity in conflict with an inner drama located in her female subjects. Castagner’s work alludes to spillage or eruption, a private moment of transgression as a form of escapism.

Sophie Woodrow’s large-scale ceramic work invents sculptural forms in fine clays normally employed in delicate or ornamental pottery. Rude forms achieve brilliance at the surface, a brooding mountain is dressed in a glaze of Welsh colours, a massive rabbit is made a soft, pearly white. Woodrow’s figures revisit romantic ideas of nature in evolutionary terms, sketching a daydream of how technology has created the conditions and the means to adapt.

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2006 S1 Salon 2006

During January and February S1 Artspace will host three programmes of artist film and video featuring work by artists based in the UK, USA, Finland, Denmark and Germany combining video formats with 16mm film projection.

S1 / salon is curated around material selected from an international, open call with the intention of creating a platform for presenting artist film and video without prescribed themes or categories.

LOUDER THAN BOMBS
Thu 26 Jan

PART ONE
Christian Glaeser | Mostar Bridge | 2004 | London
Jo Nigoghossian | Rough Hewn | 2005 | Los  Angeles
Sabine Gruffat & Ben Russell | The Ataraxians | 2004 | Columbia and Rhode Island
Sladjan Nedeljkovic | Remote Control | 2005 | Berlin
Jason Dee | That’s All | 2005 | Glasgow
Amanda Beech | Little Private Governments | 2005 | London
HK 119 Heidi Kilpeläinen | Excess | 2003 | London

PART TWO selected by Dave Beech
Mark McGowan | Cart-wheeling from Brighton to London | 2005

THE BALLAD OF THE ONE ARM BANDIT
Thu 9 Feb

PART ONE
Morten Larsen | fruit juice sunbathing | 2005 | Arhus
Lela Budde | Timekilling | 2003 | London
Gun Holmström | Disco tonight? | 2005 | Helsinki
Seppo Renvall | Inside | 2004 | Helsinki
HK 119 Heidi Kilpeläinen | Malfunction | 2004 | London

PART TWO selected by Torsten Lauschmann
Scott Bartlett | OFFON | 1968
Torsten Lauschmann | Misshapen Pearl | 2003
Phil Morton | General Motors (excerpt) | 1976
Anthony Stern | San Francisco | 1968

ISLAND LIFE
Thu 23 Feb

PART ONE
Catherine Ross | Fingering and Footing | 2005 | New York
David Muth | Tüteneis | 2005 | London
Alli Savolainen | 6 Minutes 8 Pictures | 2001 | Helsinki
Ido Fluk | Polar Bear | 2005 | New York
Esther Johnson | Lenox | 2004 | Hull
Carla Garcia | Seven Rolls of Slides | 2005 | London

PART 2 selected by Paul Rooney
Matthew Buckingham | Amos Fortune Road | 1966
Kamal Aljafari | Visit Iraq
Laureana Toledo | The Name of this band is The Limit | 2005

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2005 Spectator T: Art Sheffield 05

S1/projects is participating in the citywide event; Art Sheffield 05: Spectator T

Simon & Tom Bloor use images and texts culled from diverse cultural forms to produce ephemera and context-specific installations. For Art Sheffield: Spectator T they have produced what filthy bombastic spin a series of stickers using phrases taken from science fiction stories by Kurt Vonnegut. The quotes were chosen in response to the character Tony T developed by Gavin Wade who was commissioned to create a curatorial context for Art Sheffield 05. Hate that superior intellect of yours / Love may fail but courtesy will prevail / Nobody here believes there is such a thing as innocence are written on candy-coloured backgrounds like modern proverbs to be transported beyond the gallery, adapting and shifting in meaning as they discover new contexts.

Josephine Flynn’s work cuts across social norms and assumed hierarchies to expose them as unnecessary constructs that are somehow passed over and assimilated without question. Recent video work takes the form of a tightly edited cut ‘n’ paste gutter media bonanza, levelling everything thrown into its vast landfill whilst avoiding predictable, right-on critiques. Stuff III combines narrative form borrowed from straight-to-video Danielle Steele, a dedication to bodily functions in Microsoft Paint and a soundtrack that skips through early volumes of Now that’s What I Call Music.

Matthew Harrison’s Kustom Extension (4 way) is a deluxe prototype power adaptor, a meticulously crafted multi-socket device. Referencing design devised for obsessively customised objects such as hot rod cars and electric guitar equipment, Harrison has developed two units that propose themselves as desirable solutions for powering multiple appliances within the gallery environment. Kustom Extension (6 way) will be shown at Sylvester Works.

Juneau projects make reference to creative leisure activities frequently working directly with groups of amateur enthusiasts such as school bands or online communities. Antler Fonts is a website and customised computer console enabling visitors to download fonts designed by Fantasy Wargamers. Painting figures, making scenery and battlefield layouts enable Fantasy Wargamers to engage with creative practices on their own terms. Juneau projects devised workshops inviting participants to develop fonts that reflected their interests. The artists have made posters featuring hand-painted warriors and legends such as BLAZE A PATH THROUGH THE DARKNESS taken from their correspondence with gamers. View latest font designs at www.antlerfonts.co.uk

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2005 S1 Members Show 2005

S1 announces its first annual members’ exhibition, representing Sheffield-based artists from S1 studios and the Associate Member programme.

Comprising of twenty practices in a range of media the exhibition will include painting, photography, sculpture, performance and video. Helen de Main has strung a wire of motorized birds across the project space and Sarah Palmer has set up a video camera to capture a real-time view of her low-tech fountain (water pump in a bucket). Jerome Harrington’s sculptures fuse a boy’s world of sci-fi comics and model making. Stathis Pertisindis explores the anecdote, Prevett & McArthur have made the Norma Star Map and Heidi Schaefer has inverted land and sea in a topographical image of Europe. Matt Lewis tells a story about an iceberg lettuce missing from his Tesco Online delivery and utk have translated their conversations with a professional plate-spinner to light bulbs that flicker with the intonation of their voices. Silvia Champion is knitting the dictionary and Helen Brigham is inducing claustrophobia with makeshift stilts for her bed-sit furniture. Alison J Carr has created a wall-mounted album of vintage clergy and Amanda Lane has made a selection from her salon of miniature portrait paintings. Robin Close captures D-Rob on camera and Andrew Tebbs documents an illegal camp. On Video Julie Westerman’s animated fan blows a virtual breeze, Edwin Rostron has made chaotic animation to accompany music by the Sheffield band Hotsnackand t c mccormack’s cavalcade of taxi drivers cycle through the streets of a provincial Swedish town.

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2005 Thomas Bangsted | Bernd Behr | Matthew Gooding

S1 / projects is pleased to announce an exhibition of recent work by three London-based artists Thomas Bangsted, Bernd Behr and Mathew Gooding.

Thomas Bangsted’s large format, landscape photography considers technology and human intervention in the natural environment. His images locate moments of painterly composition or sculptural form in sites of absent labour. Materials in a builders’ yard are stacked against a red brick wall in plastic grids, abandoned machine parts appear to sprout from green turf, grain pours forth from huge sacks lying on the brow of a hill at dawn. For this exhibition Bangsted has developed a series of landscapes in agricultural settings: the vast mud-field of a busy organic pig farm, a red tractor reared on a lush hillside, a huddle of wrecked cars on a frosted ranch.

Bernd Behr’s work explores cycles of waste and exhaustion in the modern city. Video and photography are employed to document systems of circulation or regulation at work in contemporary architecture. In Hive, cars and trains travel across the screen through a dense network of concrete, an unbroken rhythm of journeys with no visible start or end. In Rorschach Manta black tarpaulin has been torn loose from the roof of an office block. The billowing material is mirrored in the glass on the side of the tower like a parasite lung breathing from the building.

Mathew Gooding’s work pays homage to everyday craftsmanship; floristry, sign-writing or mass-produced jewellery. Gold necklaces and rings from the Argos catalogue appear in a series of felt-tip drawings, a pattern from the side of a bus is abstracted in a wall painting. For this exhibition Gooding has developed new works in a series of sculptures based on the notion of an oasis or micro-landscape as ornamentation in public spaces such as shopping centres or airports. Ostentatious, floral arrangements made from wire, tape and cellophane and paper sit on huge diamonds clad with ceramic tile, carpet or laminate flooring, each casting a shadow made in the same scheme.

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2005 Karla Black | Babak Ghazi

S1 / projects is pleased to announce an exhibition of newly commissioned work by Karla Black and Babak Ghazi.

Karla Black’s work is encoded with subjective experience, juxtaposing sculpture that may at first glance resemble the residue of absent-minded play with harder supportive elements: a plinth, a frame, a stage. Vaseline, paint, plaster, dough or dirt may be carefully worked to formless beauty, paper wet and softened to become a delicate membrane. Black’s sculptures appear to evidence a physical act of material engagement, conscious of a parent generation of feminist performance and abstract expressionism. Elements of Black’s work appear to be in dialogue with each other, painterly matter may sit on glass or stained and varnished wood, seeming to assert the independence of work from the creative act, a series of sculptures may be placed or titled to assume a precarious collective status. Black’s work attempts to impart something that exists between the work and its encounters, quietly ushering in moments of recognition at the edge of our thoughts.

Notions of excess and limitation seem to reoccur in Babak Ghazi’s work. There are so many choices, so much freedom and free will that the options appear to have been exhausted and there is no choice at all. A proliferation of glossy adverts, Versace, Armani, Dior, present models uniformly clad in sunglasses made from fragments of Compact Discs. An early geometric Vidal Sassoon haircut, an image from a photo-shoot with Prince or Grace Jones; emblems of self-definition in Ghazi’s visual lexicon of “the theatre of the self”. The individual appears to be constructed by careful navigation along a path of options, some are ready-made; others are flat-packed or exist as a set of instructions or a variably described possibility, imagined through a creative act. Ghazi’s work frequently takes on this last category as an image of pseudo-transgression, a DIY culture skilfully articulated in terms of its alternativeness, make your own, grow your own, roll your own. In dialogue with a notion of lifestyle tending towards specialised behaviour, Ghazi’s work seems to offer the potential for engaging the viewer in the production of meaning. His sculptures may invite interaction (you can straddle a chair and see your crotch reflected in the mirror behind an image from The Joy of Sex) other works may sample symbols and objects in a hybrid fashion that offers little orientation towards one single interpretation, so that unitary meaning may shift in emphasis, enlarging the capacity to interrelate with other works.

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2005 S1 Salon 2005

During January and February S1 Artspace will host three programmes of artist film and video featuring work from the UK, Denmark, Germany, Estonia, Serbia and Montenegro, Australia and Peru, combining video formats with screenings in 16mm and Super 8. S1 / salon is curated around material selected from an open call with the intention of creating a platform for presenting artist film and video without prescribed themes or categories. Each salon features films selected by an artist working in the moving image.

This is the second season of S1 / salon. A national tour of tonight we are golden, a programme featuring fourteen films from the first season will be launched in February.

 

EURHYTHMY
Thu 20 Jan

PART ONE
Sarah Baker | A Portrait of Bill May | 2004 | London
Katy Dove | Luna | 2004 | Glasgow
Katy Dove | You | 2003 | Glasgow
Pil & Galia Kollectiv | Kustom Kar Inferno | 2004 | London
Diego Lama | Schizo Uncopyrighted | 2004 | Lima
Dominic Redfern | Roller | 2004 | Brunswick East
Volker Schreiner | (Hanover) Counter | 2004

PART TWO selected by Steve Hawley
Hawley & Dutton | Similar to Nothing | 2005
Peter Fischli & David Weiss
 | The way things go (Der Lauf der Dinge) | 1987
John Wood & Paul Harrison | 26 (Drawing and Falling Things) excerpt | 2001
Jeff Keen Marvo | Movie | 1967
Lewis Khlar | Pony Glass | 1997
Tim Macmillan | Ferment | 1999

ENNUI
Thu 3 Feb

PART ONE
Esther Johnson | Hinterland | 2002 | Hull
Simon Aeppli | Eden | 2004 | London
Reuben Henry | Weakling | 2002 | Birmingham
Irena Lagator & Jelena Tomasevic | May I Help You? | 2004 | Cetinje
Killu Sukmit and Mari Laanemets | Friend of Song | 2004 | Tallinn & Berlin
Stephen Sutcliffe | Death in Leamington | 2003 | Glasgow

PART TWO selected by Stephen Sutcliffe
David Mercer

 

WEIRD SCIENCE
Thu 17 Feb

PART ONE
Jason Pidd | Darkroom | 2003 | London
Stuart Gurden | eye-may-mah | 2003 | Glasgow
Kevin Heavey | Cloud R | 2003 | London
Steven Ball | Sevenths Synthesis | 2001 | London
Morten Larsen | Foxie Cutting Birthday Cake | 2003 | Aarhus
Francis Gomila | Animal Stories | 2004 | Newcastle Upon Tyne

PART TWO selected by Duncan Campbell
Hollis Frampton | Nostalgia | 1971

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2004 Archive: 1995 – 2004

Please visit our previous website for details of our exhibitions programme between 2004 – 1995 by clicking this link. Our archive page on our current website is currently being updated so all content will be moved over shortly.

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