Untitled Document

BORDERLANDS - Lee Mackinnon/Frank Brown + Christian Edwardes/Tom Hall

Date: 27 October – 28 November 2008

Abstract

BORDERLANDS presents the work of the artists Christian Edwardes and Tom Hall, and of the writers Lee Mackinnon and Frank Brown. The exhibition acknowledges the edge of systems and the hinterland between places and social classifications; they are areas of flux and sometimes conflict. This exhibition is an examination of this relationship. The artists and the writers are navigating their way around and through discussions, joining each other’s standpoints. The works presented in BORDERLANDS and the relationship between the two exhibiting artists is one of boundaries; BORDERLANDS shifts and tests the borders of these two artists’ different ways of thinking, forcing the work together to deal with difference.

The artists have invited Lee Mackinnon and Frank Brown to have a parallel discussion on the subject of BORDERLANDS through which they explore new territories and take defined positions relating to the two different processes employed by the artists. They discuss and foster debate around the processes in which the artists work, basing the accompanying texts on these discussions.

Christian Edwardes’ work is a series of ideological islands and are a reference to the separation between an idea of utopian ‘place’ and homemade attempts to reconstruct it. The work comprises of drawings and photographed constructions made from materials found in the home: from the contents of kitchen cupboards to domestic furniture. The islands set out the possibility of a transformation of space and physical ‘stuff’ through the act of making and representing objects.

Tom Hall will present an ‘unreal reconstruction’ of the library repository in Dallas. This consists of basic elements that the artist feels describe the room from which JFK was assassinated referencing the explosive political act that took place. Built out of cardboard — materials linked to storage or packaging and to the artifice of the theatre — a space within a space is constructed. The room is not a representation of the actual space but is designed from hearsay, media coverage and conspiracy plots of the assassination. The work looks to a collective idea of space and events, and draws contemporary parallels to the public’s construction of the terrorist here. We do have a ‘feeling’ of what it is, and as we begin to draw the threads of perception towards a ‘real’ thing, media and discrimination fills in the blanks of a fictionalised truth.

Lee Mackinnon/Frank Brown + Christian Edwardes/Tom Hall

Lee Mackinnon Associate lecturer in Critical and Historical Studies, Solent University

Lee Mackinnon is currently associate lecturer in Critical and Historical Studies at Solent University where she teaches across the visual arts scheme. Her own work and research explore the philosophy and political expediency of technology particularly in relation to image making, subjectivity and power. These explorations form the basis of a study entitled ‘The Self as Technology,’ from which several papers have previously been extracted for conference.

As an independent writer and researcher, Lee has presented papers at European Space Agency 2nd Space and Society Conference, Netherlands (2007); Science and Public Conference, Imperial College London (2007) and recently as part of the 59th International Astronautical Congress, Less Remote Conference with Arts Catalyst and Leonardo/ Glasgow (2008). As a visual artist, her work has been shown internationally including at The Bloomberg Space in London and Nordjyllands Kunstmuseum Denmark.

She has contributed text to live events at the ICA and Serpentine Gallery London and has previously authored a catalogue for English Heritage (Arcadia in the City 2002). It was in this same year (2002-3) that she travelled to The Solomon Islands with Stuart Johnson, under the auspices of the Slade School of Art, UCL, working as a volunteer with an NGO for 4 months and documenting an ecological project; an event which gives rise to the text in text+work, and which forms part of a larger ongoing literary project.

Frank Brown: Senior Sculpture Technician, Wimbledon College of Art University of the Arts London

Frank Brown graduated from Fine Art Sculpture at the Norwich School of Art in 1996, whereupon he started the MOTA project which initially ran as an underground exhibition space in Anglia Square, Norwich. He has been Senior Sculpture Technician at the Wimbledon School of Art since 1997, subsequently moving MOTA to Old Kent Road, south London. MOTA’s move to London consolidated earlier models of the project and it became a live/exhibition space as well as platform for other activities (including as a publisher’s and as a record label).

In 2001, Frank Brown co-curated Subway Special a Democratic Platform with Stephanie James as part of MOTA projects, funded by the AHRB, inviting artists and writers to work with a disused underground station in London. In 2007, Frank Brown completed an MA Fine Art at the Wimbledon School of Art. Currently, he is developing MOTA along less characteristically fine art modes of production, specifically in areas of audio and alcohol production.

Please download the accomanying essay for the artist's biographies and a full version of the essay/text

(Download PDF for full essay / text)