STUART ALEXANDER
NON- FICTION

Non- Fiction is a collection of photographs that attempt to imply, regarding its original definition that the photographs are of real events that actually happened. Stuart Alexander’s photo series, implies that “non-fiction” is a fiction in itself and is relative. “Each image is selected or created to be ambiguous in that I want the viewer to assume there is something more, so the moment is filled with narrative possibility. My intention is for each image to be like the first or last page of a book. In these images there is a focus on more negative suggestion, which is related to my interest in the question “do people usually assume the worst?” based on the idea that if the audience are only given a small amount of information, they fill in the gaps with their own judgement based on fears, neurosis or expectations based on the media, in effect creating their own truth. Their view is obscured and their view, once blocked is replaced by the interior, and so the exterior landscape is replaced with an inner personal or reflective landscape. The work mostly exists in the viewer’s mind, relating to the fragile nature of what is real and the construction of personal identity.” Stuart Alexander is a visual artist based in London.  

 

JILL AUSTIN
JUXTAPOSITION

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North London Artist Jill Austin blends Reiki attuned crystals with natural materials and hand built ceramics to create mostly intuitive, elemental artworks. The opening words on her website put it succinctly: Spirit Manifest; art for contemplation, for healing, for pleasure. Form is her prerequisite, glaze, specialised ceramic media and natural elements like shells, are far more than icing on the cake. The play of space (around an artwork) and of light (particularly on crystals), are core considerations. The starting point is commonly a shamanic journey into “non-ordinary reality”. The muse takes the creative lead - or takes over - more often than the designer. “Without my disabilities, I would not have journeyed regularly beyond day to day reality. If I had not been so injured, I may never have discovered or been able to express my soul’s purpose; to create Art that heals.” www.art2enchant.co.uk

 

 

WILLIAM BALL
LONE WOLF

“My take on the theme, ‘Non-Fiction’ is largely autobiographical. Being one of sixteen children, I feel that I have always had to reaffirm my individuality, amidst a sometime claustrophobic family environment. In the picture I have created I have tried to represent some of these feelings such as fear of entrapment and as a by-project, isolation.” William Ball is a visual artist and poet based in London.  

 

SHARLENE BAMBOAT
MECHANIZED LABOUR

Mechanized Labour comments on the aftermath of interruptive institutional critiques, which the Londonbased art activist group Liberate Tate demonstrated on Monday, 28 June 2010 at the Tate Britain. The group poured buckets of crude oil (molasses) and feathers, in the middle of Tate Britain's summer party in protest against the gallery's sponsorship ties with British Petroleum. They called on the Tate to end its sponsorship deal with BP following the disaster in the Gulf of Mexico in April, 2010. While I was there to film the art activist group, I realized that the clean up process that followed the ‘oil spill’-protest was more compelling. It was designated to the maintenance staff of the museum made up primarily of migrant workers who were left with the clearing of the mess, that’s how I ended up documenting their long clean-up process. I had a number of theoretical questions, while working on this video. While institutional critiques of a performative nature are important, I found that they reiterated many of the same issues they critiqued. Thus, four Latin American migrant workers (shown in the video) were left cleaning up Liberate Tate’s anti-BP protest and brought up a number of systemic issues surrounding migrant labour and privilege in contemporary British society. Sharlene Bamboat is a film and video artist whose work revolves around themes of diaspora, queerness and the female body. Her graduate thesis, completed in Toronto, Canada, explored identity construction in the experimental films and videos of the South Asian diaspora. Sharlene’s work has been gaining notoriety in recent months, screening internationally in Canada, Europe and the UK. She is currently living and working in the UK. www.sharlenebamboat.com

 

 

LEILA BIBIZADEH
ALONE, 2009, Oil paint and a broken mirror piece on stretched canvas WHY DOES IT ALWAYS RAIN ON ME, 2010, Oil paint and a broken mirror piece on stretched canvas

Alone (pictured above) represents those moments when we feel isolated and as if we don't belong or feel part of anything, when there is a deep, dark, hidden void inside and we are in desperate need of others. The black colour creates a sense of emptiness and despair, whilst the small, broken mirror piece symbolises a single teardrop, emphasising how insignificant we can feel when we are at our lowest. Leila Bibizadeh is of dual heritage – English, and Iranian. She is a versatile artist from London who graduated from The University of East London with a degree in Fine Art in 2008. These paintings are from the series The Art of Our Emotions which explore raw human emotion as Leila grabs hold of feelings we all experience at some point in our lives and paints it on canvas. Leila expresses these emotions through distorted figures that never have facial features so that the viewers can visualise themselves. She uses mirror pieces to symbolise reflection and the ability to look back at life, but also to entice the viewer because when he/she looks into the mirror they see an image of themselves on the canvas, suddenly they have become part of the painting and can instantly relate to it. Thus the viewer is encouraged to reflect upon their life and can think about being in that situation. Recently, Leila exhibited Lost, 2005 from the series The Art of Our Emotions at the prestigious Saatchi Gallery in London and is continuing to build her reputation as a skilled artist by showing and selling her work both nationally and internationally. She was also short-listed for the BBC Wildlife Artist of the Year 2010 competition, currently has work showing at Mill House, 11 Peascod Street, Windsor and her next exhibition will be at The Gallery at Willesden Green, London form 19th October 2010 – 12th November 2010. www.iwantthatpainting.com

 

 

MADELEINE BURT
THE WATERBABY SERIES

Madeleine Burt’s work explores various themes: what endures in life; what changes or is changed; and what is lost along the way. These things include relationships, attitudes and objects. She is interested by the importance of association that we place on some objects, granting them status above their function, or giving purpose to things that are otherwise functionless. This ongoing painting series is based on four baby bird skeletons, which were uncovered from behind a boarded-up chimney breast. The poignant beauty of the skeletons had a power that seemed greater and of more subsequence, somehow, than if the infant birds had lived. They serve as a reminder of unfulfilled potential; of the peculiar beauty found in things perished; and of the sadness and power of altered states. Madeleine Burt is an artist who lives and works in Nottingham, UK. She graduated from Leeds Metropolitan University in 1998 with a first class honours degree in Fine Art. She has regularly exhibited nationally in solo and mixed shows, and has been awarded prizes for her work. www.madeleineburt.com  

 

JULIE FAGAN
TALES FROM THE WAITING ROOM

In the series Tales from The Waiting Room there is an unfolding story of a liminal state which is both a personal story and a universal human experience. The works speak of a place of uncertainty, change and transition: an articulation of being somewhere ‘in between’. Tales From The Waiting Room engages an audience by allowing them to re examine the craft of painting. The work is mathematical, methodical and architectural in its composition and undertaking. Composed of crisp lines and sharp shadows Julie Fagan’s work plays on the viewer’s understanding of “light” and immerses the viewer into the paintings own physical sphere. What we see in Julie Fagan’s paintings is not the “2D” physical element of her work but the colossal structures that in varying light burst from the frame it is displayed within. Julie Fagan’s practice is that of an architect-sculptor, who happens to work with and in virtual space. Drawing directly in three-dimensions is the backbone of her practice and the way in which all of Julie Fagan’s paintings and digital drawings start life. She feels that this new media practice is exhilarating and liberating, offering a discourse on limits; a place in which anything is possible and without beginning or end.

www.juliefagan.co.uk  

 

FRAN GIFFARD
HONG KONG, CAGE 2

  I enjoy drawing things I want to possess. Every drawing depicts an item or creature I would like to have, or an event I would like to see. Each series of drawings represents a collection. By drawing, I am simply feeding my curiosities, needs and obsessive nature. Each drawing starts as a series of photographs, in this case: depicting the birds of Hong Kong with the cages from the Yuen Po Street Bird Market. I combine and manipulate these images on the computer, resulting in a digital image of a fictional scene, made from elements of reality. I then draw the computerised image using only graphite pencil and horizontal lines, giving it a printed appearance, but with a graphical and contemporary feel. The monochromatic graphite results in an intense and heavy drawing. Fran Giffard is a recent graduate of Camberwell College of Art, part of the University of the Arts London, where she studied Ba(Hons) Drawing. As part of an Erasmus exchange, she spent time at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Spain. She graduated from Foundation Art and Design at Maidstone College of Art, part of the University for the Creative Arts. She is based in London and Hong Kong. Fran is always drawing, whether it is her own interests, or challenges set by others. www.frangiffard.com  

 

RONNEE HUI
ORBITAL MOTIONS HORIZONS

Inspired by autobiographical experiences and observations, both “Orbital Motions” and “Horizons” engage with anxieties of an everyday nature. Presented as a one page dramatic script, typed on an old golf-ball word processor “Orbital Motions” recounts an unexpected experience with a “Dustbuster” handheld vacuum cleaner, a bookshelf and a visiting spider, while exploring time through its repetition and circularity. A 3-page excerpt from an International Maritine Health document about seafarers and passengers who disappear without trace from aboard ships, links the 2nd work. “Horizons,” (3 mins 13 secs) is a video of the horizon line seen at sea from the end of a boat adrift in the waves, that by contrast investigates the relationship between stillness and movement. The static long take emphasizing the element of space-time. The image, empty of beings, alludes both to history painting and seascapes, as well as to those lost at sea. Ronee Hui is a London based artist. Completing a Masters in Fine Art at Middlesex University in London, under Professor Jon Thompson in 2002, her background includes photography and computer assisted fine art. Working in a range of media that has involved object and text based-works as well as installation, video and photography, her work has been shown in more than 50 exhibitions and festivals, across 20 different countries, including the 6th Sharjah International Biennial of Contemporary Art in the United Arab Emirates and the 25th Viper International Festival of Film, Video and New Media, in Basel, Switzerland. Since 2008 she has also been a member of the international video artists collaboration, The Exquisite Corpse Video Project. http://www.wix.com/roneeh/Ronee-Hui

 

 

DONNA JOHNSON
ISOLATION OUT OF THE BOX THE STARE

Isolation is a piece of work made up of padding, satin, heat transferred pattern, plastic. The work represents me in a box not talking or being heard by anyone with regards to my mental health. Many people with mental health problems have no control over their illness and that is how I felt when I produced this piece of work. Out Of The Box is the sister piece to work Isolation. There are many paths we can take in life and I have chosen freedom and having a voice to say, “ I have mental health problems but I don’t need to be controlled by them.” Doctors and psychiatrists can listen to me, instead of me being told what medication would be good for me so long as it improves my wellbeing. This piece of work says that different paths are there for the taking. The Stare consists of wadding, plastic, sewing. In this piece of work you can see the man staring at me and I am visible to the eye no longer hiding away with my mental health problems. I am out and proud living in a world full of destruction but life is what you make it so they say. Me, as an artist of many trying to make it is difficult but I love art and this piece represents me as a black artist trying to make it in the art world.  

 

HESTER JONES
CALL YOURSELF A MOTHER

"You do not have to be clever, and you do not even have to think if you do not want to" in order to be a “good enough” mother. D.W. Winnicott. This series of photographic portraits examines the ambivalent feelings and fantasies many mothers experience towards their children. The work unsettles idealized romantic portrayals of motherhood as found in Media and more traditional forms of representation. Each photograph becomes a space for performance in which various mothers act out feelings and fantasies of ambivalence for the camera. Referencing the Madonna and Child in Western Art, each image is cropped to focus on the mother’s hand and breast, so the loving gaze of the mother is disrupted. With this gaze removed from the viewer's inspection, the conventional portrait is overturned, and each woman’s expression is undetermined. The viewer is thus invited to question the mother’s identity in today’s society. Since the subjects remain anonymous, they cannot be accused of being bad mothers. Hester Jones is a British born artist who currently lives and works in London. She has lived and worked also in Italy, Spain, the USA, and Brazil. www.hesterjones.com

 

 

SULE KEMANCI

Sule Kemanci’s work deals with the relationship between 'the real' and 'the fantasy' and the impossibility of complete fantasy without traces of reality. This same idea also applies to “fiction/ non-fiction”. Fiction is always affected by our social surroundings and never exists as a separate entity so it always carries elements of non-fiction in it.
In my work I would like to make the viewer question reality/non-fiction with the half human hybrids I create, these hybrids can be read as belonging to another world but they are also firmly connected to the realm of our everyday. They contain a degree of familiarity both physically and emotionally, which can make them uncanny while creating a simultaneous repulsion and attraction.

 

 

AGNIESZKA KOLOWSKA
THE WALKING PROJECT

The Walking Project explores the possibility of communicating in the form of an artwork a subjective experience of the world understood in spatiotemporal terms and in relation to the body as the necessary subject of perception. It consists of long-exposure photographs, films, heart-rate records, sound records, maps, etc., which in this multitude of approaches attempt the impossible: materialization of a transient experience of basic activity engaging the body in a linear progress through space and time, and production of an object indexical to the distance and duration of the experience. Starting with the realization that the above has already been attempted (notably by the walking artist Hamish Fulton) and failed (as the above quote suggests), I embarked on technical experiments with cameras and photographic materials to test the limitations of the medium in recording a walk in its continuity. Balancing between materiality and immateriality, obscurity and information, the work places equal importance on the experience of the artist - principally a solitary affair without a witness - and that of the viewer - an imaginary journey upon encountering the traces of the walk. Agnieszka Kolowska graduated from an MA in Photography at UCA, Rochester, this year. Her practice is based in photography, with results often extending into the fields of moving image and installation work. Agnieszka Kolowska also tends towards unconventional uses of various media, with a passion for photographic experiments in both analogue and digital realm.

 

 

NICOLAS LABORIE
STIGMA

Stigma is an exploration of the misinterpretation of Mental Health. The art film will present itself with a direct, personal and often challenging approach by various testimonials from people who suffer from mental illness. The main protagonists suffer from various forms of mental illness and are in their 30’s. The film depicts an event in their daily lives and the scenes are in the (mis)comfort of their own homes. Dealing without barriers, the film features a free flow of emotions and raw reality; it projects a message of the illness, which many of us refuse to see. Many people are still oblivious to the existence of mental illness and this film aims to raise continual awareness and trigger the debate again, through the medium of art. Stigma is a short art film directed by Nicolas Laborie, written by Rebecca Lori , and music by Rael Jones, starring Sylvie Gourdon, Teuta Skenderi and Richard Harvey. www.nicolaslaboriefilms.com

 

 

HOWARD LUKE
DEATH OF A PHEASANT

This painting is concerned with the idea that nothing lasts forever; that we are in a constant state of flux. The changing water of the estuary, the emotions felt by the two lovers staring into the distance, the shadowy figure of the old man walking on the bridge above the dead pheasant that dominates the picture. I wanted the painting to be a dreamscape with each element seemingly plucked from the subconscious. Some of the elements were taken from paintings by ‘Monet’, whereas the purple sky is taken from Prince’s ‘1999’. The painting can also represents the death of love and being old and alone. These are the non-fictional elements of this surrealist piece. Howard Luke is a painter based in London.

 

 

GRAEME NEWTON
INSIDE, INDOORS

  The picture I have created to represent the theme ‘Non-Fiction’ shows people eating, drinking and enjoying themselves in the ‘great’ outdoors. It has a kind of festival atmosphere. It reminds me of a special time when I was at a festival; sitting in a tent, enjoying myself and watching football. The picture shows people sitting, there is food and drink on the table, there is a stove. Same of the outside is on the inside. There are mountains, sky and a truck. I have also used biro, pencil and gel pens, which I like for their vibrant colours to create this festival atmosphere. Graeme Newton is a London based artist who has studied art at ‘Lewisham College’. He presently attends the art classes at CoolTan Arts.  

 

FROSO PAPADIMITRIOU
CHAIR PAINTING SERIES (PICTURED) BLACK DOT SERIES

The use of specific materials like furniture and recycled objects aims to create a bridge of familiarity whilst the newspaper cuttings are used to provoke social awareness and to remind the viewer that human depravity and the suffering associated with it is a NonFictional state of life. Every piece of work is part of a narration of testimonies and life stories arising behind borders, weather that is house walls or territorial limits, that features on the media placards but fails to intrude in our box-shape everyday routine.
 

What drives my work is the need of communication with the viewer, within an alarming content about the fading humanity and isolation of the self from social attention and action. Based on the requirement of a personal non-objective translation and intimacy of the viewer, the work itself is open to any interpretation that derives from experiences and memories.  

 

LULU PARENT
THROUGH THE LOOKING LENS

Through the Looking Lens is a grid consisting of 288 photos arranged in a 24 x 12 framework in a colour coded spectrum. The piece is essentially a photo grid which represents her daily visuals, that which fall into her melting-pot of influences. The grid consists of a series of photographs she has taken of things that attracted her eye in the streets. Mostly urban art and doorways, she has captured through her shots, the world that she sees. She believes that each individual has a very personal way of seeing things, each person would therefore have his/her own completely different grid. “The things I shoot are simply the things I see...” she explains. Her photos are then carefully wrapped around blocks of wood to create a mini artwork that works well on its own or in a small series. The title Through the Looking Lens is a reference to Alice in Wonderland, another childhood memory she wants to impose on the viewer. Even her photographs have a childlike quality about them. Lulu is revealing to us her non-fiction, her world the way she sees it everyday. Lulu Parent lives and works in London. She recently graduated from Central St. Martin's with a BA in Fine Art. She works in various mediums, focusing on the conceptual aspect of research before generating the ideas into artworks. Throughout the years she has worked to create an atmosphere through her art rather than a specific piece. Often centred around themes of childhood, colour and repetition, she experiments with the audience's reaction to the spaces she creates. She works with installation, painting, photography, sound and film, developing the medium to suit the concept. She enjoys questioning the audience and revealing glimpses of the world through her eyes.

 

 

THERESA PATON
HOME

Often depicting retreat, my work is interrelated capturing the concept of space in its entirety, encompassing the connection space has to time and movement. Through the exploration of geometry and physics this has enabled me to take a closer look at nature and has helped me comprehend the association between rhythm, pattern and the formation of growth. My fascination then grew towards the relationship a straight line has to the curve and this encouraged my objective to produce organic and free flowing skeletal structures using this principle. In essence my work is about seeking the truth and references the fundamental science of mathematics and the connection this has to the very core of one’s existence. The nature of my work corresponds well with my concerns over time and space and the beauty of my practice stems from simplicity, which could attract the involvement of all ages and walks of life. Newspaper is used as a medium to convey the importance of recycling and emphasise the endurance and resilience of nature, whilst expressing fragility of form. Home is about retreat, of contemplation and deliberation. By rolling newspaper, this action provides instant filtering of information, and thus representing the spring-cleaning of one’s Home. www.theresart.me.uk  

 

TOM POWELL

Born in Manchester in 1950 it was not until I went to work in Italy as a young man that I became aware of art and culture. Although only a waiter, I found myself surrounded by people whose character had been greatly influenced by music, art and food. This experience gave me the confidence to attend Art College, which I did on my return to England. I then became a silversmith working and living in Scotland and the Orkneys. Returning to lancashire I became an Art and Craft teacher. Since taking early retirement, art and painting have become very important to me. I have lived in Rochdale for nearly 30 years and exhibit my paintings and drawings regularly. In the future I have plans to exhibit my silverwork. I enjoy art that has a strong narrative, and that is the reason that most of my pictures have a story attached to them.

 

 

LOU PSYCHE
DOG GIRL MONKEY BOY  

   
Dog Girl Monkey Boy is an ongoing series of paintings that are inspired by the true lives of feral children Oxana Malaya the Ukrainian dog girl and John Ssebunya the Ugandan Monkey boy. After being 'rescued' from her dog family Oxana now lives in a home for the 'mentally handicapped'. When asked what makes her happy she replied “I’m happiest barking and howling'. John ran away from home and lived with monkeys after watching his alcoholic father murder his mother. It is suspected that John had suffered from some form of mental illness before the incident, which perhaps made him unable to seek human help. Lou's paintings are about freedom and nakedness. She paints on found/scavenged/salvaged materials for these works in order to feel connected with a more feral identity. They are about discovering the real self and casting away the ego and illustrate the confusion of desire for freedom and nakedness conflicting with the desire to conform Lou Psyche is a London based artist who graduated from Sir John Cass London Metropolitan University in 2009.

 

 

JULIE RAFALSKI
WHAT WAS MISSING THEN?

In the documentary-style video installation What was missing then?, people in Warsaw answer the questions: “What was missing during the communist time?” and “What is missing today?” A second screen shows a flower seller naming flowers that were unavailable or “missing” during the communist time. A voice-over describes which images the narrator lacks in the documentary itself. Documenting a transitional period in Poland, this piece compares two political systems by pointing to that which was of value in the previous communist time as well as that which appears to be of value today. While looking at both the communist and capitalist systems through the lens of everyday experience, the piece maintains an ambivalent standpoint on the advantages of both systems. www.julierafalski.com  

 

ALUSINE SHUMA
YOU CAN COME BACK (TRIPTYCH)

I was born in Sierra Leone and came to London in 1993 to escape the civil war in my country, during that time, I participated in the Peckham Positive Project to study Art and Design and English. I have been attending CoolTan Arts for the last six months. My paintings are about a quiet place with some activity. I tried to represent a sense of continuous movement through the landscape. The place is divided into three different views that also allow the element of time to enter the scenery as morning, afternoon and evening. The passing hours reflect the three different ages of man but instead of nostalgia I wanted the painting to express the interaction between man, the land and the changing seasons. As seasons always return so we hope to return to the places that we love.

 

 

CLARE SMART
KATHERINE

Katherine is a multi media body of work, which highlights and aims to make aware the complexity of the condition of schizophrenia. Clare Smart is a London based documentary photographer using photography and multi-media to create images rich in character. My social portraits always remain true to the real lives of the people I photograph, focusing on identity, family and narrative. In video and multi-media I tell people’s stories to raise awareness about particular issues. I believe in immersing myself in the world of my subjects, allowing space and time to build genuine relationships. I merge techniques of documentary, portraiture and photojournalism to create bodies of work.   www.claresmartphotography.co.uk

 

LESLEY STEVAS
ABERFEDY FALLS CASCADE II

This theme has developed out of the pleasure that I derive from walking either in a London park, such as Hampstead Heath, or along the banks of a Scottish riverside near to my brother’s cottage. I have become captivated with the movement of water such as waterfalls. I take photographs to use as reference material. I do not wish to studiously reproduce the waterfall, which the photograph records but merely use it as an aide memoir. I feel an affinity with nature to the point of feeling overawed; it’s almost like falling in love. Sadly this is not the case when I am in the middle of an urban environment. I want to escape from there as often as I can. I wish to communicate my notions of the joy that feel when I am outside especially by waterfalls. I am inspired by the effects of the weather, the bright contrasting tonality of sunlight on water or its rays falling upon the leaves of a tree. I also wish to convey a sense of playfulness and vivacity in paint, as the water bursts and splashes and yearns to be free of the limitations of the stones and rocks which contain it. Or perhaps it’s the sound of the waterfall which roars with laughter at me. Capturing the movement of a waterfall is one of the most difficult subjects that I have painted and some days I feel like giving up. The photographs from which I work offer just one still moment of this constant movement and the paradox is that paint is about making things slower, so that any changes take place gradually. Sometimes I am so excited when I paint that I physically shake and when the painting works well I feel intoxicated with happiness.

 

 

BEN WALKER

The central themes which inform my work currently are historical atrocities, specifically the Holocaust and Nazism. I don’t want to make literal, descriptive paintings but to use figurative elements and subdued tonal ranges to depict people who were viewed as anonymous or as objects, and to reflect a sense of vulnerability and create an impression of remoteness. The figures in the compositions are often vague or simplified, reduced to silhouettes, with unnecessary detail eliminated. The backgrounds of the paintings contain enough information to indicate some kind of space or setting. I work on coarse grained linen which is sized rather than primed, and use a fairly narrow range of colours – mainly browns, greys and greens. There is an emphasis on the actual process and evolution of making the work. Value is placed on the application of paint, the variation of the brush marks, and the surface.   www.londonsartistquarter.org/content/icb