Inspired by the launch of our new community platform, we've selected five artists who have made work around notions of community, featuring: Tom Pearman, Maisie Pritchard, Sally Kidall, Jessica Harby and Henny Burnett
LONDON MAYOR'S AIR QUALITY FUNDED ENAMEL SIGNAGE PUBLIC ART PROJECT, 2017
Funded by the London Mayor’s Air Quality Fund, Tom Pearman has been commissioned to design a series of enamel signs to be located in the Brockley area. Each artwork has a different positive message on a different opening box that contains ‘CLEANER AIR’. It is hoped through this public art scheme and through active public consultation and educational art workshops, that the artworks will help foster a collaborative and creative approach towards promoting cleaner air quality.
Take a seat Prototype, 2019
Maisie Pritchard’s practice is concerned with the impracticalities existing within architectural design methods implemented within the urban environment, that tend to deter the public from using street furniture. Feeling especially ardent about socio-political issues such as the UK’s current housing crisis, privatisation and community, she is influenced by the ever-changing urban environment. By initiating interventions concerned with social sculpture, she aims to create works that are playful yet accessible in order to colonise the city with bespoke furniture. She considers other ways of approaching privately-owned spaces by merging social sculpture and gardening to install unwelcome objects such as planters. The act of giving works to the public is important to Pritchard as it is a contribution to the specific environment that she is working within, a sigh of relief follows when works are no longer her property. She intends to enliven corporate spaces, reclaim what is ours and defy rules of social behaviour. After all, these should be our public spaces.
The Grass is Always Greener: lest we forget, 2014
This site-specific work was created for Tufi’ Arte, a community arts project.
This commemorative piece was dedicated to the memory of the ancient indigenous occupants of Tufia and their modern day descendants. Very little is known about the origins of these communities and why they left their homeland to settle in Gran Canaria. Remnants of their stone dwellings mark their early settlement on the northern headland above the modern village and are preserved as an historic site.
The Grass is Always Greener: lest we forget not only celebrates Tufia’s ancestral communities but it is dedicated to those communities who are effected by the current escalating world issue of community displacement and global survivors, whether caused by catastrophic climatic events, social and religious conflict or economic collapse.
The concentric circles of plastic bags and earth workings are reminiscent of European prehistoric stone circles. Each plastic bag is partially filled with the sparkly local black volcanic beach sand and seawater, supporting a fine wire and timber ladder type structure.
This site-specific environmental installation was made in 2 parts. And was partly relocated during its construction. Part 1 located up on the arid dusty hill tops above the village of Tufia in the Spanish island of Gran Canaria. Part 2 was located on a black volcanic coastal platform adjacent to the village.
YOUR RELUCTANT DIPLOMAT, 2016
As an American-born person living in England, I am regularly called upon by strangers and acquaintances to explain or justify the political actions and cultural output of my home country. No other time provides as rich an opportunity for these kinds of interactions as a U.S. presidential election.
At the end of April 2016 I set up an installation and office space for three days in the Project Space of NN Contemporary Art and finally embraced the role that the English have wanted me to hold since 2008. I would be their reluctant diplomat. The public were invited to come in and discuss Donald Trump with me, an American who absolutely did not want to take responsibility for Donald Trump. But in addition to putting Donald Trump into cultural, political, and historic context, the art and subsequent discussions addressed larger issues of home, community, national identity and belonging.
Collectors Tracks', 2013
Collectors Tracks' was a sculpture show with an interactive twist. Visitors were invited to take away miniature sculptures made from material collected during walks across the Wiltshire landscape. But they had to bring something they had found or made to replace the item they took. The sculptures were set within plaster towers that not only reference not only the chalk downlands of Wiltshire but also the military watchtowers on Salisbury Plain. This piece went on to be developed into a much larger scale piece in 100 Wiltshire Towers.
Published 9 March 2023