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UAL Research Online


Christian, Toby (2016) ha-bit-us. [Show/Exhibition]

Type of Research: Show/Exhibition
Creators: Christian, Toby

HA-BIT-US was a celebration of twelve months of exhibitions and events in Hastings.

The title of the exhibition HA-BIT-US is a playful adaption of the word Habitus, meaning a system or habit of mind that affects our environment. By breaking this word down it suggests a more everyday reading (has Ha ‘bit’ us? And if so, is it a bite of affection or aggression?). Like the title, the exhibition asks us to look again at our habits of perception and assumptions, of not just what, but how, we look at our environment and the activities we find there.

Objects and embellishments give evidence of our presence and care. Engagement in our environment requires our learning certain gestures, or disciplines of interpretation, that makes entry possible. We see this in the mosaic-like paintings of Biggs and Collings and the densely painted structures of Stephen Buckley. Their works suggest a tension between not just what we paint, but how we paint it.

The work of Toby Christian and Yelena Popova are at once tactile and seductive, yet suggestive of a deeper underlying space. The marks they leave behind seem fragile yet insistent that their presence is felt; making ripples into the surface of our understanding.

Colin Booth and Nika Neelova reanimate the purpose and function of familiar objects, creating pathos in the relationship between our bodies and the physical objects that occupy our space. Their works playfully engage in the surface and structure of our habitat, creating ‘gestures’, which refocus our habits and relationship to the places we occupy.

As the culmination of a year-long programme of exhibitions and events in which Observer Building Hastings has simultaneously enlightened, enraged and inspired, HA-BIT-US suggests that OB’s legacy is one of generosity. It is a creative generosity that embraces differences in practice, context and aspiration.

Artist and curator of HA-BIT-US Matthew Burrows says
“My aim for the exhibition is to bring together artists from across generations, whose work asks us how we approach visually and physically our environment and habitat. I want HA-BIT-US to be like a room of questions in a spirit of openness, humour and hospitality.”"

Other Contributors:
ArtistBeattie, Basil
ArtistCollings, Matthew
ArtistBiggs, Emma
ArtistBooth, Colin
ArtistBuckley, Stephen
ArtistChristian, Toby
OtherNeelova, Nika
OtherPopova, Yelena
Your affiliations with UAL: Colleges > Central Saint Martins
Date: 24 July 2016
Locations / Venues:
LocationFrom DateTo Date
The Observer Building, Hastings24 June 201624 July 2016
Material/Media: Acrylic and block printing medium on canvas
Date Deposited: 17 May 2018 12:55
Last Modified: 17 May 2018 12:55
Item ID: 12525
URI: https://ualresearchonline.arts.ac.uk/id/eprint/12525

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