Renee So: Ancient and Modern at De La Warr Pavilion
A new exhibition of work by West Dean College Artist-in-Residence, Renee So, is now open at the De La Warr Pavilion in Bexhill-on-sea.
The exhibition, Ancient & Modern, includes hand-woven textiles, furniture, and ceramic works that refer to representations of the female figure in prehistoric cultures. A tiled mural is based on the Egyptian goddess of the night, Nut, her body bent in a yoga-like pose in order to provide shelter to the earth; other ceramic sculptures are reminiscent of pre-Columbian figurines of Venus. These continue So's on-going investigation into ceramic vessels that people across the world have made to drink and eat out of for thousands of years.
Pottery and textiles represent some of the earliest forms of material culture. So uses imagery found within these histories to make gently satirical commentary on contemporary social codes and power structures. By using traditional craft techniques such as weaving, knitting and pottery, Renee So addresses the hierarchy between craft and art; the former is traditionally seen as women's work - less serious, domestic, invisible and un-authored - while the latter is still often associated with the idea of the (historically white and male) lone genius.
This exhibition emerges from a residency initiated by the De La Warr Pavilion and West Dean College of Arts and Conservation. Renee So was selected from an international open call that offered an artist time, space and facilities for making new work, as well as access to a variety of resources and facilities, including the historic West Dean House and the College's collections and archives.
Saturday 28 September - Sunday 12 January
Kindly supported by The Elephant Trust and The Golsoncott Foundation.