Untitled Document

in no particular order - Kathleen Abiker+Simón Granell: Curated by Josepha Sanna

Date: 8 December 2008 - 23 January 2009

Abstract

In no particular order: painting as metaphor for presentness, is an exhibition of paintings by Simón Granell with the writings of Kathleen Abiker and curated by Josepha Sanna.

The collaboration and exhibition is an exploration into the process of painting as metaphor for presentness and into what it means to be stuck, unable to act: a reason to create or a reason to stop. The work does not merely reflect the process of painting but is about the method of painting; it is evidence of an act, but of process interpreted by gesture.

Some of the paintings are reminiscent of macro or micro-landscapes: fields, layers, cross-sections or fingerprints, seen from a great height, or seen from close up. The exhibition proposes a series of paintings that, in their ‘daily recording’, chronicle existence and evoke the passage of time, complemented by a series of incidental speculations presented in the text.

The audience’s role in these works is that of the archaeologist; retracing and deconstructing the history of a work. This process engages time, simultaneously connecting with the artist’s activity and the impossibility of its full retrieval. Repetition and consistency give way to ambiguity. A process that starts off explicit becomes uncertain and distorted, as does an everyday word whose meaning is lost through repetition, and whose beginning and end become blurred.

What must it be like to endlessly repeat an activity?

The first part of the project was an investigation into a series of paintings and a text that explored process in painting as metaphor for presentness. The second was the artist’s personal reflections on being stuck, unable to act. Considering Stuck as a good thing or as a bad thing; a reason to create or a reason to stop. At the heart of this is what François Jullien refers to as blandness:

“Blandness not as the absence of defining qualities but as the harmonious union of all potential values - an infinite opening into human experience.” (Jullien,F. 2007)

Kathleen Abiker+Simón Granell+Josepha Sanna

Kathleen Abiker

Kath Abiker studied Fine Art at the Slade School in London and subsequently completed a research led MA in the History and Theory of Modern Art at Chelsea School of Art. She is Course Leader for Art History at Ashford School of Art and Design and teaches on the MA in Contemporary Arts programme at the University of Kent, lecturing primarily on the significance of philosophy and postmodern theory in relation to contemporary art.

She is interested in the boundaries between theory and practice and maintains a balance between the two: painting, exhibiting, writing and theorising around practice and the relationship between thinking and making.

Simón Granell

Born in England in 1964, Simón Granell studied fine art at Falmouth School of Art and The Slade School of Art, London. He was nominated for the Picker Fellowship at Kingston University in 1991, and in 1992 was nominated for the Barclays Young Artist of the Year Award and shortlisted for the British School at Rome. He has exhibited widely in the UK and Spain, and has worked with artist Tania Kovats on the Drawing Quarters symposium at Bristol School of Art.

He has also been Artist in Residence at the Escola Massana in Barcelona while also teaching on the Winchester School ofArt European MA. He recently collaborated on the project underground with Roger Ackling and Eric Butcher, in the basement rooms of Shoreditch Town Hall, East London, and took part in MEETING PLACE - Contemporary Art and the Museum Collection, a site-specific exhibition at the Russell-Cotes Art Gallery & Museum, Bournemouth.

Josepha Sanna

Josepha Sanna is the editor of Word Matters - a book of seminar transcripts about the interaction of language and art, which were hosted in Venice on the occasion of the 52nd Venice Biennale.

In 2007, she was appointed as Knowledge Transfer Catalyst Research Assistant (funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council) to bring the academic expertise of the Arts Institute at Bournemouth to the business enterprise of ArtSway, a contemporary visual arts organisation in the New Forest.

She is currently working with both institutions and is a Studio Assistant for the painter Ian McKeever. She is also part of the Poole-based artists’ collective Artworks, where she specialises in process-based sculpture. In no particular order is the first exhibition that she has curated.

Essay cover image: Inside “La Sebastiana”, home of Pablo Neruda in Valparaíso. This image is reproduced with thanks and is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License. http://creativecommons.org/ licenses/by-sa/3.0/

image 3 (detail of painting)

(Download PDF for full essay / text)