Friday 12 – Sunday 14 October 2018

Vane is pleased to be participating in The Manchester Contemporary. This year’s presentation includes both artists represented by the gallery and from neighbouring initiatives, Ampersand Inventions and B&D Studios, both based in Commercial Union House, home to the largest concentration of artists and creative organisations in Newcastle upon Tyne. Artists showing are Ben Applegarth, Feliks Culpa, Nancy Isherwood, Jonpaul Kirvan, Melanie Kyles, Jock Mooney, and Narbi Price.

Ben Applegarth (born 1990, County Durham, lives in Newcastle upon Tyne) is concerned with evolving geometrical structures, a fascination with mathematical patterns and the literal and figurative role of perspective. His sculpture Onsra (2018) utilises unused or off-cut materials from older pieces re-executed in an impromptu fashion. In a similar manner, for the screenprints Radium and Emanate (2018) the images were painted directly on the screen without any preconceived plan.

Feliks Culpa (born 1962, Durham, lives in Newcastle upon Tyne) works at the fault line of figuration and appropriation creating monochrome images dictated by time. The paintings Navigator 1 – Going Dutch and Navigator 2 – To Hell and Gackenbach (2018) portray the navigators (Dutch Van Kirk and Russell Gackenbach) of the planes that dropped the atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The works consider the fluid dynamic of our moral compass and if time and space can flip ethical poles. His portrait of Andy Warhol (North Quarter) (2018), is taken from a series of drawings of Warhol and author William S Burroughs’ New York encounter at the Hotel Chelsea.

Nancy Isherwood (born 1982, Bolton, lives in Gateshead) creates miniature paintings each made inside a discarded bottle-cap. The work takes a light-hearted look at the perception of value within art and disposable cultures, highlighting how even the most insignificant debris can conceal beauty, humour and worth. The images range from reproductions of classical art as in The Laughing Cavalier (2015) and Rembrandt Self-Portrait (2017), to pop culture in Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band and Born in the USA (2018).

Jonpaul Kirvan (born 1975, Newcastle upon Tyne, lives in Newcastle upon Tyne) takes found objects and repurposes them to create works that explore literary escapism. In Not a grand day out (2018), a discarded silver cup trophy towers over a miniature, exclusive island resort populated by tiny people. This apparent symbol of material success and power is undermined by the cup’s tarnished, discoloured surface; whilst its Lilliputian inhabitants appear lost in an uncertain and troubling world.

Melanie Kyles (born 1990, Newcastle upon Tyne, lives in Gateshead) takes what are usually regarded as gender-specific materials, such as fabrics and crystal, to subvert notions of economy and practicality traditionally associated with the ‘decorative’ arts. Women for a new era (revisited) (2018) embraces embroidery, a skill typically assigned to the feminine, as a form of creative communication skill. The women depicted, Iris Apfel, Josephine Baker, Frida Kahlo and Gloria Steinem, are cemented in modern history for openly challenging societal expectations and rewriting what it means to be a modern woman.

Jock Mooney (born 1982, Edinburgh, lives in London) constructs a world populated by grotesque characters, weird animals, and morphed plants, as in his lithographic print, Awk! Awk! (2009) in which a blank-eyed, disembodied bear’s head floats in space. Fascinated in the ways in which societies visually memorialise death, Mooney’s sculptures A Real Wreath (2007) and Fried egg wreath (2012) appear to be composed of dismembered body parts or the debris of everyday life, acting as both momento mori and macabre comedy.

Narbi Price (born 1979, Hartlepool, lives in Gateshead) journeys to places that have witnessed a range of events – variously historical, famous, or forgotten. Untitled Phone Box Painting (Comrades) and Untitled Sky Painting (Bus Station) (2018) show the Northumberland town of Ashington 30 years after the last mine closed, and were recently shown as part of a larger series at the town’s Woodhorn Museum. Once the largest pit village in the world, Price shows the town searching for a new identity. Price was a prize winner in the John Moores Painting Prize, Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool (2012) and winner of the 2017 Contemporary British Painting Prize.

Friday: Preview 5-9pm
Saturday: 10am-6pm
Sunday: 10am-5pm

Manchester Central
Windmill Street
M2 3GX

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