An exhibition featuring an exciting gathering of artists to celebrate the arrival of spring. They are bringing together a variety of stimulating, original work to create a vibrant, elemental environment. This is sensual work, using wild, primeval, multicultural and pagan elements to celebrate the power of nature and of the imagination.
Dagmar Rieger (Austria), Ella Guru (USA), Helene Williams, Jo Roberts, Gaye Black, Danielle Dax, Charlie Pi, Stephen Bird. Most of these artists have international reputations, and have exhibited and performed around the world.
These artists boldly examine life, death, sex, religion and transgression. A mirror is held up to our culture’s taboos, in terms of what is acceptable to represent, to reject, and to use. The work at the exhibition shall be a combination of sculpture, painting, illustration, film, collage and assemblage.
These artists share a common vision. They are aiming to convey the divine aspect of human nature, and it’s dark twin: our animal desires and instincts. Ever since the dawn of human history, we have been making images of supernatural beings and holy creatures. Our oldest surviving images represent urgent ideas about nature, primal urges and the supernatural. As human society has “progressed”, it is worth contemplating that religious icons still represent some of the most beautiful aesthetic expressions in our various cultures, whether we choose to worship at them or not. Regrettably, lives are still being lost, and wars fought over such icons, and for the right to create and display such religious images, so we should ponder what they represent politically and culturally.
The exhibited work shall be supplemented with sessions of performance and music from Jowe Head & The Demi-Monde, Helene Williams, The Rude Mechanicals, Bird Radio, Rotten Bliss, and Sexton Ming. (See full schedule at the bottom of the page)
Opening on 27th of March from 6.30 : ‘A Shamanic Street Ritual’ a performance by Mark Fuller and Helene Williams. (Mark Fuller, blacksmith and performance artist. His most recent performances have been in East Anglia where he presently resides.
SNAP Aldeburgh Festival in 2013: Milk & Music performance with Sarah Lucas
and at Whitstable Biennalle 2014: Milking the Coast with Helene Williams )
2nd April: First Thursday open until late 6.30 to 9.30: Cos Chapman and friends. The eccentric professor returns! The guitar boffin at the heart of Rude Mechanicalspresents live improvisation, with prepared guitar and electronics.
Helene Williams, based in Kent, is an accomplished, innovative sculptor who works in fabrics, plaster, ceramics and found objects. She is also a performance artist, and has performed some memorable ritual-based pieces in the Whitstable area
Jo Roberts, whose practice embraces paintings, illustrations and mixed media work. She has recently completed a period as an Artist in Residence in Berlin. She also has an excellent reputation from performing as a solo artist and in her amazing band Rude Mechanicals.
Gaye Black spent three years at art college, qualifying as a graphic designer, before becoming bass player with punk band The Adverts. Since then, she has been exhibiting regularly in the UK, and shown her work in Germany and the USA. She has also curated three exhibitions. Her work uses assemblages of found objects, including organic detritus, often collaged with paint, photos and jewellery, and often encased in resin.
Danielle Dax, the unique musician/performer, produces visionary paintings and kinetic 3-dimensional work. Dax was born in Southend-on-Sea, Essex and spent the majority of her early childhood with her grandparents who encouraged her love of art, nature and the occult. She appeared in two films – Neil Jordan’s – ‘The Company Of Wolves’ and ‘The Chimera’ and was regularly performing with dancers/performers, body paint, hand-painted sets, costumes and the films of Holly Warburton’.
Dagmar Rieger, based in Linz, Austria, works with collage fabrics, paint, embroidery and found objects. She has showed her works in the University of Salzburg, in Linz, and also in Istanbul, London, and Birmingham.
Charlie Pi has a background as a Performance Artist (Charlie Pig), and creator of conceptual art pieces, and as a Therapeutic Counsellor, before returning to Fine Art. He organised many exhibitions of his work including Summershows at St Pancras Crypt, and in the basement of Shoreditch Town Hall. His work includes burnt fabrics, found objects, drawing and paint.
Ella Guru is an American-born painter. She works in traditional oil paint on canvas, taking inspiration from painters like Caravaggio and Velazquez. She is a founding member of the Stuckist art movement. After being a resident of London for 23 years, Ella is now based in Hastings. One of her recent projects completed is a series of paintings of the 22-card Major Arcana Tarot.
Stephen Bird is better known as a performer under the name Jowe Head. He makes collages, sculpture, reliefs and clocks using recycled junk. He is also an accomplished draughtsman, painter and print-maker. He has been involved in countless exhibitions in London, and in Berlin, Hamburg and Augsberg in Germany, and also in the USA at Manhattan in New York City, and at Phoenicia in upstate New York.
Saturday April 4th from 7: Jowe Head and The Demi-Monde + Sexton Ming
Sexton Ming has been recording/ performing off and on for over 30 years, as a founder member of The Medway poets, as a solo performer, and in a duo – The Tasty Ones – with Ella Guru. Sexton also collaborated with the likes of Billy Childish / Project Dark / Leigh Bowery’s Minty etc. Sexton will be giving a special performance of his early Hangman/Rim back catalogue plus a few cover faves. Convinced he is a Holy Fool, he would like to dedicate and spread the word of a brother in arms recently departed, Dave Cloud. Everything has a purpose and a time for that purpose.
Mister Jowe Head played with early pioneers of the independent post-punk scene Swell Maps, and Television Personalities in the 1970s and 1980s. He continues to make challenging music, and has recently played in the USA, Germany and France. He is featured here with his band The Demi-Monde, featuring Catherine Gerbrands on electronics and vocals, Tim Bowen on cello, and Ravi Low-Beer on percussion. They have a new project about visionary artists, called “Ars Longa Vita Brevis”.
Sunday 29th March from 3.30: Hand of Stabs & Valerie and Her Week of Wonders
Hand of Stabs, from Rochester in Kent, are a three man geodelic collective whose work draws inspiration from their exploration of local, often forbidden, landmarks. They create improvised sound pieces, which can be simultaneously uplifting, difficult and intense using both traditional and home-built instruments. Many of their performances take place within the landscape – in woodland, field, or rain-lashed long barrow at Winter Solstice. They have played in a ruined school, derelict basements, Kent’s remotest church, the studio of a Turner-nominated artist and on board a light vessel. Each performance is a tense interplay between the three performers resulting in a form of archaesonic dowsing, an interaction with place that is unique each time. “Feral Kentish sound sculptors” – Pete Wiggs & James Papademetrie, The Séance.
Valerie and Her Week of Wonders, an unplugged set from Valerie and Her Week of Wonders featuring the vocals of Catherine Gerbrands and multi-instrumentalist Jowe Head accompanied by Tim Bowen on cello. They use the sounds of Catherine’s ethereal high alto voice, together with zither, autoharp, psaltery, cello, bowed saw and glasses to create a timeless beauty. “Pastoral gothic and funeral whimsy”.