Involving Ourselves: Dolly Brown, Rivkah Gevinson, Ruby Squires, Isabelle Young
AUSSTELLUNG 12. Oktober - 9. November 2019
OPENING 11. Oktober 2019 6-10 PM
Galerie Norbert Arns presents Involving Ourselves, an exhibition featuring four photographers who share a peripheral perspective of a subject and explore a sense of privacy. A central observation of which all four photographers are keenly aware is a comment by the writer and curator Gerry Badger, who remarks that ‘in general, painters begin work in the middle of the canvas. Photographers begin with the edges of the frame’.
Dolly Brown’s perspective resides in the wings of the stage. Gaining access to the sacred behind-the-scenes areas of London’s Royal Opera House and Sadler's Wells, she documents what the audience can never fully see: the Royal Ballet's corps de ballet turning away from centre stage and facing into the wing, or a Royal Opera House assistant drawing back a curtain for the principal dancers’ curtain call. With the same intimacy, Brown photographs painters at work in their studio. Not only does she capture the canvas acting as a stage for a painterly performance – as seen in her recent visits to painter Erin Lawlor’s studio – she also emphasises the artist’s private working space.
Rivkah Gevinson uses the camera to seek out and emphasize the gesture, light and color that assembles a moment. Photographing in the every-day, she finds her images like ephemeral still lifes, at once personal and incidental. “When photographing a landscape, I am both immersed in myself and what is in front of me," she notes, her often abstracted images – blurred scenes and dissolved picture planes – give a sense of self in one's surroundings.
Ruby Squires captures the fleeting but charged moments that mark the young friendships that define us, alongside an intimate depiction of the natural landscape. Squires’ upbringing within a rural environment is clearly visible; parallel themes emerge in the dialogue created across the pairing of images. The arms thrown into the air wave at something below, but seem still and posed; a cloud of smoke appears as though on cue; and plastic sheeting envelopes a young girl - who may have been equally unaware of the photographer as Squire’s other subjects. Together they are subtly emblematic of a time and age in life.
Influenced by the architectural aesthetic of Northern Italy, Isabelle Young captures her subjects through closely cropped and fragmentary details. Focusing on the surrounding areas of well-known historical landmarks, Young highlights the charged ambiguity of peripheral spaces with a quiet and focused attention to detail. Her work often comprised of a painterly palette of faded tones, the artist derives much of her sources from Italy which has since informed a wider series across Europe, and more recently, Los Angeles. Drawn to the soft pink tones of a French beach scene or the timeworn cushions in painter Celia Paul’s London studio, Young is constantly aware of confidence in concealment, in both herself and the subjects she captures.
The female gaze and personal experiences are at the core of these works, revealing an awareness of how women feel continuously perceived by others both as subjects and in the act of taking a photograph. Each photographer pays attention to the periphery to explore how women themselves have often existed within this space, their work holding and capturing what is missed.
Dolly Brown (b. 1976) is an artist based in London. Her work explores the process and presentation of artistic practice. She has worked with the Royal Ballet, Barbican, Tate Modern, Trisha Brown Dance Company, BalletBoyz, Mark Morris Dance Group, Sadler's Wells and Darbar Festival, among numerous others. In 2016 she was named by Aperture Foundation as one of 11 photographers to follow on Instagram and completed a residency with the Barbican, London in January 2017. Previous exhibitions include The Great Women Artists: Women on Instagram, Mother, London, 2017; For Since a Woman, St John of Bethnal Green / Plinth, London, 2017; Free Range, London Institute of Photography, 2017-2018; and Dear Photography, Hamburg, 2016.
Rivkah Gevinson (b. 1990) is based in New York and Oslo. Recent projects include a photobook Leaver, Returner, 2019 and a short stop-motion animation Be Home Soon, 2018. Gevinson's work has been exhibited in Norway, Germany, Northern Ireland and New York. She holds a B.S. in photography at Skidmore College, and was a resident artist at Atelier Austmarka, Norway in 2016, and the Edward Albee Foundation, Montauk, NY in 2017. She is the project manager for After Dark, a publication by Hilton Als.
Ruby Squires (b.1991) is a UK-based photographer working with film and analogue processes. She studied for a Foundation in Art & Design, Chelsea College of Arts, 2012 and a BA in Photography, Arts University Bournemouth, 2015. Previous exhibitions include Ladylike, Open Space, Bournemouth, 2013; Voyage, Anteros Art Foundation, Norwich, 2016; Holiday Snaps, Norwich Playhouse, Norwich, 2016; Homework, The Crypt Gallery, Norwich, 2016; More Homework, The Crypt Gallery, Norwich, 2017; Deadline, The Crypt Gallery, Norwich, 2018.
Isabelle Young (b. 1989) is a London based curator and photographer, currently studying for a Photography MA at the Royal College of Art, London. Recent and upcoming projects include the Artist Residency at Palazzo Monti, Brescia, Italy (September 2019); Art For Youth, Mall Galleries, London, UK, 2018 and Overhaul, Peckham 24 Photography Festival, London, UK, 2018.