How have our ideas changed around presence through the year, in 2020? With unprecedented change in the ways in which we are able to interact with spaces, people and environment, an awareness of absence in the world is perhaps more prevalent today than ever. In which case, what forms of presence remain? Where do they lie and how might they shape the future? In this exhibition, through the work created and shared by the public and Our Team artists in our lockdown open call for Young Artists Sharing the Light, we have a lens through which we might begin to explore these questions. (All of the artists represented here, except for the last one, are between the ages of 18 and 22).
Sophia’s isolated image of two extending hands, captures an awareness of our own presence in fleeting moments. The open expanse of water reflected between these open arms invites us into the image as an experience of our own.
Addressing the power of our presence and future within the natural world Racheal created this poster ‘to spread awareness on what sea pollution is doing to our wildlife and their environment, showing our oceans before and after sea pollution.’ Motivated by a study on marine plastic pollution she poses the question ‘how are we going to stop the death of our oceans?’
In this final composition of her sculpture series, Josie explores the possibilities for interaction and relationships between audience and sculpture in an exhibition setting. ‘By removing the traditional “no touching” rules of a gallery, I am hopefully introducing a more personal way to receive the work.’ Space, environmental impact and ‘igniting an emotional attachment in the maker and viewer’ are key components.
Taken from her zine, Quaren-dreams, Jaz’ collage or ‘composite’ work was created in response to our open call theme DREAMS during lockdown in June 2020. Touch, interaction between bodies and tactility is ever-present in the mind and vividly imagined in this dream scene.
Created in response to the theme BIRDS in our Lockdown open call in June 2020, Anya’s portrait seeks to capture her subject’s natural ‘magnificence’, metamorphosed with digitised fairy wings and twinkling light. The blue hue of the computer screen reminds us of the new and changing spaces in which we connect and inhabit. With the photographer and analogue camera in shot, the layers of transformation of change are enhanced.
This work by Stella was part of Arts Lab’s open call project I AM NOT AN ISLAND addressing the subject of loneliness. In this digital collage using photography and painting, she shares ‘how we exist with strong emotions that make us feel as though we live in different realities.’ In this piece she captures ‘a person who means the world to me. She and my work are what makes me feel I’m not alone. I wanted to portray how important she is to me and how solitude affects your mental health.’
This work was produced by Anya as part of Arts Lab’s project WE NEED TO TALK, a conversation on the importance of the BLM movement through 2020. This photograph was taken at the Black Lives Matter Solidarity March in Plymouth, UK in June 2020. The power of presence is amplified in protest and its demonstration at the march is documented in this image.
This work explores our interaction with nature’s presence and growth, through mark making. The natural repetition and patterns found in the ageing wood are traced in red, blue, and white, tracing out the years.
Created in response to the our lockdown theme, PATTERN in May 2020, this page from Bella’s zine, explores ideas of repetition, patterns of thought, and daily routine, present in the conditions of isolation.
Created in the early stages of lockdown in April 2020, Cecilia created this mixed media cereal box piece. In her first experimentation of 3D illustration, she imagines the stories of spaces we increasingly inhabit in ‘our isolated rooms – microworlds during covid times’.