Winchester MA show

by Chantal

I went to Winchester on Monday to check out the MA show. It was a bit of a mixed bag with a number of works leaving me a little underwhelmed. I was also disappointed that it was so difficult to get hold of further information about the artists’ practices. A decision had been made not to include statements alongside work which is fine in itself but neither had many artists that I looked up made full use of the website designed to promote themselves and their practice. I found it surprising that some hadn’t taken time to upload an artist statement and that this website in itself wasn’t well promoted to visitors (I only found out about it from someone invigilating the show when trying to find out more about an artist).  However, this aside, the work of some artists really stood out (such as Dominique Emmanuelle‘s visceral use of rope and honey) and I wanted to mention two in particular that I thought were particularly great.

Presence, 2010, David Podger

Ben Jenkins‘ kinetic sculptures using large sheets of black rubber were mesmeric in their slow stretching and prodding of their skin like material. I found the juxtaposition of the visible mechanics alongside the materials that were evocative of something quite bodily (a slowly rotating chinese paper fan, the tactile swathes of black rubber) to be intriguing and quite beautiful. These were displayed alongside what I first thought were huge dark photocopies hanging from the wall but on closer inspection were actually charcoal drawings.

David Podger had created a brooding installation comprised of a looming monolith sculpture and a projected video work of a door opening into a bright white void. The viewer was incorporated into the film by way of their shadow being cast sharply onto the screen as they walked through the space. The installation, housed in a darkened room, was successfully immersive creating a strong sense of  foreboding and anticipation, and I personally found it to be the strongest work in the show. It was well executed and had a clear consideration of both space and the viewer.

I hope to see more from these guys in the near future!