Creative Arts and Design > Drawing]
Thirteen paintings were made as a result of Geraint Evans' residency at the Berwick Gymnasium Fellowship, funded by the Arts Council and English Heritage, and based in the Grade I listed Berwick Barracks in Berwick-upon-Tweed.
Evans, along with fellow resident artists Marcus Coates and Annie Cattrell, were invited to respond to the very particular environment of the Barracks, the town and its immediate environs, utilizing existing practices and based upon submitted proposals for a period of four months between October 2002 and March 2003.
The outcomes of this Fellowship were presented in the form of a solo exhibition at Berwick Barracks (31 May - 6 July 2004), supported by a modest catalogue with a short text. 'The Berwick Gymnasium Fellowship 1993-2005' has been published by English Heritage and Art Editions North (September 2007), including an essay on Evans' project edited by Cherry Smyth.
The project explored notions of aspiration and the parochial/suburban in relation to a particular location. Evans was interested in notions of failure and aspiration in relation to Berwick's isolated geographical position and through the influence of external cultural forces, particularly the influence of mass-mediated Americana, (making direct references to American Graffiti, Dogtown and Z Boys and Bruce Springsteen). The project asks how painterly narrative fictions can investigate and describe notions of failure and aspiration in direct response to Berwick's unique cultural configuration. Drawing and photographic documentation formed the basis of this investigation, articulated through figuration. A series of ink drawings on paper were produced for this project, investigating drawing as an authorial, painterly and immediate medium.
Work made specifically for this project was subsequently included in 'Dirty Pictures', The Approach, London, 2003; John Moores Liverpool Exhibition 23, Liverpool,2004. 'Weekending', Globe Gallery, Newcastle, 2005 (reviewed in Art Monthly by Paul Usherwood 01/01/2005); and RMIT Project Space, Melbourne, Australia, 2005.
|Type of Research:||Show/Exhibition|
|Additional Information (Publicly available):|
Geraint Evans Research Statement:
It is the perception of landscape as something both familiar and exotic, a construction of memory and fantasy, a harbinger of myth and history and a sum of images both false and superficial (WJT Mitchell 1994: 263) that has informed my recent practice which encompasses narrative driven paintings and drawings. The writer Lisa le Favre has argued that the "idea of what landscape should be is bound up with the ways in which it is represented back to us through culture, be it painting, photography, film, literature or television", bound up in architypes and conventions (le Fauvre 2000: 89).
In his introduction to 'Landscape and Memory' Simon Schama writes that the 'wilderness was as much the product of culture's craving and culture's framing as any other imagined garden. 'Referencing Yosemite National park he observes how, despite the snack bars and car parks that service the visitor, we still imaging the landscape as the depopulated wilderness depicted by the photographs of Watkins and Adams and the paintings of Bierstadt and Moran. He continues:
The very act of identifying (not to mention photographing) the place presupposes our presence, and along with us all the heavy cultural backpacks that we lug with us on the trail.' (Schama 1995: 7)
Tourism encourages the pursuit of the 'authentic' experience and often promises an encounter with the 'natural' landscape. Elizabeth Diller and Ricardo Scofidio write: "often a sight must struggle to resemble its expected image.the postcard [for example] has become the fixed referent after which the mutable sight models itself. "(Diller and Scofidio 2005: 103)
Within the city, daily encounters with nature take the guise of domestic gardens or the man made approximations of natural landscapes in high streets and shopping malls, where fig trees, fibreglass crags, pebbles and bark chippings form a now familiar hybridized landscape, with marble, glass and stainless steel.
Whilst writing about the work of Dan Holdsworth, Angus Carlyle used the term 'synthetic nature' to describe the contemporary urban and suburban landscape, where 4x4's (named 'Voyager', 'Explorer' and 'Range Rover') guided by GPS systems and driven by well prepared individuals in techno-fibre clothing, roam no further than the out of town shopping mall, which after all might be suggestively named Lakeside or Bluewater. (Carlyle 2000: 7-11)
My practice aims to utilize painterly narrative fiction to further understand our relationship with nature, how we might attempt to shape or simulate landscape in order to form something idealistically 'natural', framed within an urban or suburban context.
|Your affiliations with UAL:||Other Affiliations > RAE 2008|
Colleges > Wimbledon College of Art
|Date:||31 May 2004|
|Funders:||Arts Council England, English Heritage|
|Related Websites:||http://www.english-heritage.org.uk/server/show/ConWebDoc.16314, http://www.wimbledon.arts.ac.uk/35279.htm|
|Locations / Venues:|
|Measurements or Duration of item:||various|
|Deposited By:||INVALID USER|
|Deposited On:||27 Nov 2009 21:39|
|Last Modified:||25 Apr 2012 12:44|