On Looking (2011)
On Looking was initially a working title given to multiple fragments of forms and ideas that resulted from time spent in Venice as part of Wales at Venice's Invigilator Plus programme during 2011. Participating artists were given time to spend developing a personal project, for which I concentrated on the act of looking:
Some works of art are stared into from a distance as if there was an invisible barrier, some are scrutinised and hunched over, or maybe demand participation. Some make time seem slower and others will make quietness happen. This collection of work is made with the intention of looking at the way that art is viewed and navigated. My interest lies in what defines an implied edge or territory and how it is responded to by people. How this edge defines the spaces in-between and visa versa. The work considers the space of the blank page or white canvas – suggesting a form or a shape by introducing elements of realism – but not quite enough to make it a fully understood or described space. As a contemplation and a working method, the blank page is compared to a void, infinity, something not understood or a silence, which is defined by the stuff it meets at its edges.
Based on the ideas mentioned above, Studies on Looking (2011) is a series of 40 pencil drawings that were made using digital photographs taken at the Venice Biennale in 2011 as reference material. They depict various scenes of people looking at artwork in exhibition spaces, studies of the act of 'professional looking', or perhaps viewing as performed. Only the people are depicted, placed within a blank page space: the un-drawn space inherits a scale and perhaps a shape from the reaction of the depicted people; perhaps reaction not as response, but as a means to construct the shape of a situation.
On Looking was exhibited at the Zacheta gallery in Warsaw as part of No, No, I hardly Ever Miss a Show (2011) and subsequently in 2013 in Panorama at The Last Gallery, Llangadog. One drawing was selected as part of the the 2012 Kyffin Williams Drawing Prize at Oriel Ynys Mon, Anglesey.