— or —
At least striving for positivity in the knowledge of a limited time in which one can be productive
A collaborative project between PILOT and Ramp Gallery for SPARK International Festival
Hamilton | August 2014
Daphne Simons | Ena Kosovac | Gabrielle Amodeo | Michelle Beattie
‘Practice’ has an odd ambivalence of meaning: as it shifts between its definition as a noun and its definition as a verb it implies both accomplishment and lack. A gifted surgeon has a practice, but a fumble-fingered child must practice her violin more. The word carries an inherent reminder of its opposite which is perhaps even more apparent for those with an artistic practice. Almost like memento-mori, there’s that niggle in there: that although an artist may have a practice, and even though that artist might regularly practice, s/he may not get better. From this, the artists in this show were made conscious of a point of stasis between aspiration and indifference and how they might respond to it.
Each artist has a multidisciplinary practice and uses various means to address the tensions of ‘practice’. From Kosovak’s assortment of hand-made objects that are, were or could be useful to Simons’ video work which traces the lessons between two accordion teachers and a range of students over the course of 4 months, from Amodeo’s series of books addressing average life-expectancy through listing the hours of her 31-year past, and her possible 43-year future, to the things Beattie made while avoiding her art practice, the artists investigate the fact that things improve over time but also deteriorate; that things both wear down and accrue with time; addressing things that are useful at the point where they cease to be useful; the things done to avoid the things that should be done.