C.E.P Kitchen Project Task 1.
James Fish, Hollie Collings, Nicola Jane, Katrina Regala, Natalie Siu and Nancy Zhang
Report by James Fish
Initially our group idea was to use a dysfunctional kitchen space in Farnham, we contacted both Homebase and Farnham Kitchens to see if we could hold an exhibition in one of their display kitchens. This would link to the dystopia part of the brief as a display kitchen looks perfect but is not functional. Both stores replied saying that is was a project not in the interest of the shop so we searched further afield to Godalming where the Homebase there gave us the use of a display kitchen for a whole weekend at the start of January.
After finding the space the next job was contacting artist our brief to them was an artwork which is about escape in some form and a video piece so displaying the work would look both professional and in context with a kitchen as you would expect to see TV/ iPads in the space. I emailed two artists who took part in the Interims 2015 show at the RA, both were in there final year and to start of with were very positive with their responses but after finding out where the exhibition would be held they decided not to take part because they felt it would effect there work to be shown in such a space.
We had the same response from a few galleries too so finding artist was a struggle. In the end we had Hilde Huse, Emma Correal and Alex Hanson. With only Hilde sticking to our original brief for the project meaning that the work which was displayed looked out of place and Alex’s Hanson’s work was very poor both in quality and also the context. But unfortunately we had no choice but to display these artists work as the kitchen space was to big just for Hilde Huse work.
The curatorial aspect of this project was to set up the space to try and make the artist work better than it was. The most successful placement was the use of the sink for Hilde piece as in the video she submerges herself in water linking this to the sink and the kitchen, which had working parts. The 2D prints of sunglasses were Alex Hanson’s work and the most interesting part of this was that the general public kept on moving them as they wanted to see the parts of the kitchen the work was covering and not the art itself.
The whole group publicised the exhibition by a mixture of press releases and posters.
Furthermore, I created an Art Rabbit account so we could post on social media and also locals would find out about our event. Even though the exhibition was on a weekend as we thought this would be the busiest time for the shop we had very little footfall around our show. We did however manger to get on the front page of the Surrey Advertiser who publicised the images and also the context of the show. This unfortunately was printed after the show had finished.
This experience of curating and also organising a show taught me the importance of choosing the right space for an exhibition. If we had a better space our original artists would of showed and then the exhibition could have been more successful. I did however learn about publicising a show and writing a press release.