An international touring exhibition that takes its title from American poet, novelist and art collector Gertrude Stein’s modernist, abstract text, Tender Buttons (1914), a group reading of which provided the catalyst for the project. As the text approaches its centenary the three artists are testing its relevance to contemporary art practice. They have used it as a catalyst for discussions, cross-referencing Stein’s textual abstraction with their own practices.

Lady Lucy takes her fascination with collected print material into a new dimension as she looks at the source of her source material in The Price is Marked inside the Book, a slideshow documenting the last year in the shelf life of a soon-to-be-closed second hand bookshop. Recent painting and drawing works employ layering and double pictorial references in a sort of ‘battle’ of imagery.

Jacqueline Utley has used collage and watercolour as the basis for her new series of small-scale oil paintings, which disrupt both composition and judgements. In this exploration of possible counter-narratives, she has used household furnishing catalogues of rooms and observations of everyday found still-life objects/ornaments and flowers.

Flora Whiteley looks to Stein’s usage of her own domestic surroundings as the building blocks of her abstract writing. Applying this approach to paintings and drawing on disparate images of interiors and collections, whilst simultaneously using her paintings as ‘backdrops’ and ‘props’ she explores how objects in space create a form of open ‘abstract’ dialogue with each other and the audience.

The exhibition tour started at Galerie Futura, Berlin (11 May – 14 June 2013) then travelled to Transition Gallery, London (20 July – 11 August 2013).

Jacqueline Utley: Recent group exhibitions include ‘Stardust Boogie Woogie’, Monika Bobinska, ‘Prognostic Bridewell’, APT Gallery, London (2010). She was an exhibition finalist in the FringeMK Painting Prize, Milton Keynes (2009). Her work was part of the group show ‘BLANK PROMISCUITY’, Deptford X, London (2012).

Flora Whiteley: Recent activity includes ‘Better Place Portraiture’ performed with Darren Banks at the Barbican, London (2010), ‘The Nail, the Colours, the Mast’, co-curated with Tim Greaves and Christopher Rollen, The Kotti-Shop, Berlin (2012), and ‘Luminous Language’, Launch F18, New York (2013).

Lucy Woollett aka Lady Lucy: Recent projects and exhibitions include: ‘The Court Portraits’, Spacex, Exeter (2010), ‘Staff Portrait Studio’, The Whitechapel Gallery, London (2011), ‘Volunteers’, Festival of Britain, Southbank Centre, London (2011), ‘Idle Worship’, The Centre for Recent Drawing, London (2012).

An exhibition catalogue has been produced in collaboration with Berlin-based designer Annette Knol to accompany the tour and is available from our shop. Price: £3.50