CALLY TRENCH

Remarkable and Curious Conversations

Curated by Cally Trench

Mary Yacoob: Discourse at Mary's

Six Remarkable and Curious Conversations artists joined Mary Yacoob at her house on Wednesday 9th March 2011 for another discussion. They were Marco Calí, Ingrid Jensen, Claire Deniau, Joan Skelton Smith, Philip Lee and Cally Trench.

Design of the Panopticon: Chaos by Mary Yacoob
Mary Yacoob
Design of the Panopticon: Chaos (2011)
Etching 76 x 56
Thin Cities: Tool Heads by Mary Yacoob
Mary Yacoob
Thin Cities: Tool Heads (2011)
Etching 22 x 34 cm
Thin Cities: Pathway Machines by Mary Yacoob
Mary Yacoob
Thin Cities: Pathway Machines (2011)
Etching 22 x 34 cm

Philip Lee: There was such a range of interesting work, all of which reflected the particular strengths of the maker:

Cally's life-sized 'skyscraper', The Remarkable Bookshelf - a homage to reading - got everyone in the mood for thinking about mysteries and riddles. Did we work out the system by which Cally sized and ordered the many book spines? While sculptural in their chunkiness they seemed to draw all of the members of Remarkable and Curious Conversations together in an act of communal study.

Joan's paper sculpture, mysteriously and meticulously simulating a crumpled table cloth, enchanted us with its delicately lacy edges and unexpected pattern of holes. While we tried to work out the hidden folds the piece played tricks on our eyes. It had us all suggesting ways to tease the viewer still more.

Marco also teased us with his series of enigmatic drawings traced from video stills, which obscured and revealed in equal measure. Exodus - a reworking of the book from the Bible of the same name - his witty text on fine bible-like paper, made us laugh out loud!

Claire's physically and mentally multi-layered paintings, along with her auto-writing with quill, got everyone excited as we tried to work out what was going on in her head and hand as she made numerous incomprehensible sentences in hieroglyphics in black ink on paper. Suggesting strip cartoons, boulders, figures and charming narratives, they were so much more than we could express in words and we were loath to let her put them away.

Ingrid's hybrid drawings+paintings, created amidst and during Philip and Cally's latest performance, were pored over by us all as we started to get a sense of what it was like to make work during messy live art. Ingrid's great skill in drawing under pressure was clear for all to see and admire. We also observed Ingrid carefully moving across the floor each drawing from the pile of interleaved sheets of tracing paper and fine fabric. This became a performance for us, which we thought might be repeated in an exhibition, we knew not how!

Cally's time-lapse film of her performance with Philip, resulted in a journalistic quizzing to ascertain who was running the show - was it Cally's performance, or was it Philip's? While the selection of images, which included the ocassional hand, arm or shoulder of an energetic photographer, was variously condoned or rejected, the film, lasting 30 seconds, was thought to be a boon because it saved us sitting through the whole 40 minutes of the live performance!

Finally, and definitely not least, we feasted our eyes on Mary's astonishing etchings. These truly fine, fine art works are amazing in their detail and evoke thoughts of impossible mechanisms and unaccountable processes, all created with Mary's trademark precision and perfect line. Deceptively simple they have a beautiful and complex logic, which seems to be reflected in their physical presence.


Mary Yacoob: We had some good discussions about new work that people were showing. I got some very useful feedback about the panopticon etching (eg making simple things complicated, and references to machinery and planets). It is interesting to see people working in a range of materials within their own practice, eg people working with both steel and paper; performance and book; drawing and film.

Joan Skelton Smith: I feel reinvigorated to get on with more work. It was a pleasure to meet more members of the group, see their work and share ideas. The cut paper work that I brought to Mary's is based on a piece of needlework from my collection. I brought the piece to Mary's on a black background; during the conversation we tried it on a white background. Afterward back in my studio I experimented with other ways to show the work.

Ingrid Jensen: Thank you too for suggestions on presentation for the drawings: I have been experimenting with hanging them against the light but not photographed them that way yet. The image is of one muslin drawing lying on the grey studio floor - a bit like Philip sometimes!

Claire Deniau: Being 'locked' in my studio in Paris, I tend to feel that I take my work too seriously and that I question too much the process: it is motivating to realise that everyone is very dedicated and concerned about their work. The variety of the mediums as well opens doors for exploration...

Marco Calí: In terms of the work I presented, I was especially excited about the response to the humour in one of the works and had some very good suggestions regarding the ink-on-tracing paper drawings.

Open Work by Joan Skelton Smith
Joan Skelton Smith
Open Work on white
Cut paper
Open Work by Joan Skelton Smith
Joan Skelton Smith
Open Work on black
Cut paper
Open Work by Joan Skelton Smith
Skelton Smith
Open Work on grey
Cut paper
Open Work by Joan Skelton Smith
Joan Skelton Smith
Open Work negative
Cut paper
Blindfold Slip drawing by Ingrid Jensen
Ingrid Jensen
Blindfold Slip drawing (2011)
Mixed media on muslin
Work in progress 2 by Claire Deniau
Claire Deniau
Work in Progress 2 (2011)
Ink on paper 21 x 29.7 cm
Work in progress 1 by Claire Deniau
Claire Deniau
Work in Progress 1 (2011)
Oil on linen 41 x 33 cm
Work in progress 3 by Claire Deniau
Claire Deniau
Work in Progress 3 (2011)
Oil on linen Diptych, 81 x 130 cm
Still from The Blindfold Slip Silent Movie by 
Cally Trench/Philip Lee
Cally Trench/Philip Lee
assisted by Lorraine Pepper
Still from The Blindfold Slip Silent Movie (2011)
Stairwell (Tiger Bay) by Marco Calí
Marco Calí
Stairwell (Tiger Bay) (2011)
Drawing

Discourse at Mary's

Discourse at Mary's

Discourse at Mary's

Discourse at Mary's

Discourse at Mary's

Discourse at Mary's

Photographs: Philip Lee

Mary Yacoob
Ingrid Jensen
Philip Lee
Marco Calí
Cally Trench
Claire Deniau
Joan Skelton Smith

Remarkable and Curious Conversations: The Artists

Remarkable and Curious Conversations: The Interactions


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