Opening night at Connect: project exhibition in London – Ply Gallery, Hornsey Town Hall Arts Centre

After a week of workshops and experimental making, the artists of Connect: Katowice in London present 12 group collaborations in an evening PV/opening on 8th December 2016 at Ply Gallery in Hornsey Town Hall Arts Centre. Exhibition ends 16th December 2016.

The halfway point – Connect: Katowice in London

12 artist groups of Connect: Katowice, with creative makers from both UK and Poland, showcase some of their finished projects and works-in-progress, in a wide range of art practices that include: site-specific experiments, interactive pieces, archives, drawings, text-based work, digital film, animation, and sculpture at Ply Gallery in Hornsey Town Hall.

'Maze of Fabrics' by Alex Roberts, Karina Kaluza, and Monika Mysiak.
‘Maze of Fabrics’ by Alex Roberts, Karina Kaluza, and Monika Mysiak.

In one intriguing result of the dozen conversations so far, there seems to be common ground across the groups, not just within the group. For example, in both “The Fox Link” (Sarah and Agata S.) and “Life and Death” (Marcin and Kelise), the artists have relied on an archive to inform, and even become the artwork, which in “The Fox Link” the archive is entirely digital and in “Life and Death” the archive combines physical items as well as a short documentary film.

Or in the case of Paul’s work with Mariusz, compared to the Marilyn’s and Wojtek’s installation, both make use of reflective, rippling surfaces in a site-specific location as a key aspect of the work.

In addition to his work with Paul, Mariusz added two other pieces in the exhibition, a sound piece in which a robotic female voice repeats the word “Space” over and over, and a mesmerising video-within-a-video where the camera pans over a mountain landscape:

Work by Mariusz Maślanka.
Work by Mariusz Maślanka.

One guest commented that Adam and Monika’s 2-meter-plus boldly constructed “Masks” seemed quite “boisterous”, yet provide an effective contrast with the more “ephemeral” works in the room, such as the “Maze of Fabrics” by Alex Roberts, Karina Kaluza, and Monika Mysiak.

Other artists utilised text as the foundation for experimental work, with Jonathan Slaughter, Izabela Łęska, and Sybilla Skałuba inventing a novel way to create a “personal symbol” by tracing the path between letters over an ordinary keyboard. Taking the idea further, both “presence” and “absence” can be discovered where the lines intersect and where they don’t connect at all:

…while Joseph Lichy and Agata Leżuch compose a short story or zine tracing a possible connection between their grandfathers who were in France at the same time during WWII. “Grandfathers” is illustrated with drawings and text in turns by both Agata and Joseph.

'Grandfather' by Joseph Lichy and Agata Leżuch.
‘Grandfather’ by Joseph Lichy and Agata Leżuch.

Another collaboration evolved into two different artworks related to a found object, a basket, which appears in a series of playful photographs by Shadi Mahsa and Regan O’Callaghan…

Collaboration between Shadi Mahsa and Regan O'Callaghan in 'Carrier of Identity"'.
Collaboration between Shadi Mahsa and Regan O’Callaghan in ‘Carrier of Identity”‘.

and a film by Joanna Zdzienicka and Aga Piotrowska:

Still from 'Nothing by Force' film work by Joanna Zdzienicka and Aga Piotrowska.
Still from ‘Nothing by Force’ film work by Joanna Zdzienicka and Aga Piotrowska.

Connect: Katowice in London at Ply Gallery/ Hornsey Town Hall is open until 16th December 2016.


More:

Installation view of Connect: at Ply Gallery in Hornsey Town Hall Arts Centre (with Żorek, one of our project sponsors from Żory, Poland).
Installation view of Connect: at Ply Gallery in Hornsey Town Hall Arts Centre (with Żorek, one of our project sponsors from Żory, Poland).
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