Leanne Bell Gonczarow and Ian Gonczarow have spent the last 5 week in residence at OMT Gallery, part of Enclave in Deptford. Having just returned from living and working for the past 3 years in Moscow they have been using their time in the gallery to reflect on their experiences within a tough political and economic environment. The resulting work is now installed in the gallery until Friday 31st August.
Tuesday – Thursday 10 – 6pm and until 8.30pm Friday as part of South London Art Map’s Last Fridays.
Enclave UNIT 9
I have agreed to follow on from Ian and Leanne as 2013 Artist in Residence next summer. I plan on taking advantage of Enclave’s proximity to Deptford Creek and the Greenwich Peninsula to further investigate this raw and ever changing part of the Thames bankside. I’m looking forward to having a base from which to explore this area in more depth by foot and sail/rowing craft (TBC) to produce a body of work which will result in a solo show at the end of my time in the gallery.
Keen observers may notice I wrote a similar post back in December (Back to the Studio) when I took on a sublet following months of studio wilderness. But this time its different. Rewind back to the final days of the Florence Trust residency where myself and a number of the artists sat down with plans for a shared space and a continuation of the energy that we’d created during that year. We had some false starts along the way, seeing spaces with real potential which for one reason or another fell through (some at the 11th hour).
Having spent a year in each of my 2 studios previous studios, followed by 4 months in the recent sublet I’d had enough of moving around or using the temporary nature as an excuse for not having the correct set up. I guess for me this idea of the perfect studio could mirror someones desire to make a good home; having all your belongings around you and spaces which appeal to varying sides of ones personality, or in terms of a studio, space to work in multiple disciplines. The luxury of space at the Florence Trust (doubling on my previously studio square footage) was one that I wasn’t prepared to give up. I want to invest in my studio, for it to be big enough that my work isn’t compromised and that I can grow into it over time and not feel the need to upgrade when a big project comes along. I recently brought Sanctuary – Britains Artists and their Studios, a huge book interviewing 100+ artists in their studios, i’m interested in how different set ups work for different types of practitioner and have been making mental notes of things that could work well in the new studio.
I’ll be sharing the studio with Alan Magee who I was at the Florence Trust with. A multi disciplinary artist who I recall introduced himself by saying he does everything but paint. And now that this painter is dabbling with sculpture, photography and printmaking its going to be an exciting to watch things develop.
The new studio is run by Space England’s largest provider of studios with a community of around 700 studio artists. Alan and I will be sharing 550sq foot of studio with plenty of natural light from skylights and window it offers flexibility, storage and space for work to live before being unleashed. It needs a lick of paint on the walls and floor as well as bit of storage built which will keep us busy for the coming weeks as we slowly move bits over.
On the note of developments its probably a good opportunity to mention one of the first major projects I will be working on in the studio. I’m going to be making a site specific sculpture as part of WW Gallery’s Patio Projects, a temporary public art commission which sees a sculptural work installed at the front of their space on a residential East London street. The piece is going to be 3 metres high and constructed from found wood, ideally driftwood with which I will be using to make a sculptural realization of one of my painted river mooring construction (or should that be a recreation of the original structures?). I’ve wanted to work with wood for some time and am excited to seeing how this will turn out and gauging reaction.
The Londonist have written a small article on my work as part of their London artists series, which looks at artists who take the city as inspiration. You can see the article here
After a self imposed studio exile since leaving the Florence Trust in the summer I was delighted to collect the keys for my new studio over the weekend. In that time I’ve viewed, written, read, installed and even brought art, everything but make it. The break was much needed at first, after an intense year in the studio I wanted time away and also needed to get my head down and earn some money. But the last couple of months have really made me aware of what I’ve been missing. The times when I wasn’t working, when I would have usually been in the studio felt wasted and with December being notoriously quiet work wise I jumped at the chance to get going again.
In my blog entry summarizing my year at the Florence Trust I mentioned plans for a shared studio with a couple of fellow FT artists. Those plans are still very much in the works so I see the current studio as a stop gap for a couple of months until we get the green light to move in. There will be much more information on this in the new year but in the meantime it feels great to finally have a space where I can go and try things out. I spent Saturday afternoon moving a few bits of equipment over and messed around with some block prints I made at home during my exile. At the time they didn’t feel as though they were going in the right direction, but having a space to view them in and work into them was perhaps all I needed?
With a work in a couple of exhibitions at the moment and a few shows lined up for early 2012 it feels like good timing to get making again. Watch this space..
Photography: Loren Lazić-Duffy
What do you get if cross Facebook with an art gallery? The answer might well be Rise Art, a community based art platform that offers up and coming artists the chance to sell their work, and fans of art the opportunity to purchase original pieces at affordable prices from as little as £50.
Co-founder Scott Phillips, explains, “Rise Art helps anyone discover amazing work from a curated selection of talented artists. We work with top emerging artists, as chosen by our community and Board of Curators. Working directly with each artist to produce exclusive, original prints in strictly limited quantities’. Owning a piece of genuinely inspired and beautiful art has never been so easy or affordable with pieces starting at £50.”
Phillips continues “Whether you are a first time buyer or avid collector, Rise Art helps you discover and connect with a wide array of emerging artists in a fun, social platform.”
Words: Chloe Di Chiara (Phoenix Magazine, July 2011)
Graduated from Middlesex University in 2006
What sort of person would buy your art?
I imagine someone maybe a young professional. Someone who engages with the city and urban landscapes but also wants something a bit more vivid and expressive.
What media do you use, what is the process?
I work in oil, but it’s very much a two-part process – my paintings consist of a background that dries for two weeks. Then I do a lot more desk-based painting, with much more detail, the top layer is a lot more flat.
What has Rise Art done for you?
They have been great. Making a print edition in collaboration with them is quite unique. Since then they have been quite good at backing me and promoting my exhibitions and just looking at different ways to connect with a market and the wider art world.
What have you been up to since leaving university?
I’ve been practicing and I haven’t really taken a break – I worked for an art framing company and met a lot of artists. I would recommend any kind of job to a student that can get your near to artists!
What’s next for you?
At the moment I am doing a year long residency at The Florence Trust [a studio space for selected artists set within a Grade 1 listed church], hopefully there will be opportunities from there.
What advice would you give to an aspiring artist?
Just look at lots of exhibitions, find out what you like and enjoy, and start to develop your ideas and try things. When you’re young it’s good to not be too defined at that stage.
What inspires you?
I guess my current work, it’s very urban and about the city in a very abstract way. As part of the process of researching I walk along the river Thames with my camera.
Here are a couple of new paintings completed near the end of my time at the Florence Trust. These both featured in the end of Residency summer show which finished on Monday (18th July). A few more new pieces can be found on my website along with these, click here to view them. I’ll be writing about the exhibition and thoughts on my time at The Florence Trust soon.
Its been a couple of weeks since the auction but I thought I would post a few images from the event. I’d forgotten how slick and well hung the work looked in the space, a real feat considering they only had a day to get everything in the space and onto the wall.
As well as having my 2 works sell I managed to pick up a great Guy Allott print to add to my growing collection, with artists donating and bidding on the work of others there was a lot of friendly competition which made a great fun night.
This one night event raised an incredible £2178.12 for the British Red Cross, Japan Tsunami Appeal all from a couple of hours of bidding. Well done to all those involved in putting together a success event and making lots of money for the cause.