Absent Artists' Collective
Before the Easter Break 2018 I started thinking about creating some sort of collaborative project with other students from my year once we no longer had a studio space at the university. I started discussing this with others and came up with the idea of using the space in my house as studios for people to be able to come and work together.
I hosted several get-togethers at home to show people the space in which they would be able to work and see if they might be interested. These were positive encounters and several students showed a clear interest in the project and the group that was starting to take shape. This gave me the motivation to continue with the idea.
The group that finally came together to form the collective were:
- Antonia Caicedo
- Lauren Cattle
- Rachel Davy
- Lara Hempsall
- Martin Ortiz de Taranco
- Roy Yuan
The idea, from the very beginning, was that people were able to carry on with their own studio practice but that at some point we might end up working together towards delivering a collaborative piece.
Individually we worked in a mix of media including photography, screen print and sculpture, and we came together to create a series of performances exploring the concept of movement in space.
Unfortunately Rachel Davy was unable to join us in Bath so I got in touch and proposed for her to send us material over email or by post so that somehow we could collaborate with her at a distance. The idea came from David Hockney’s fax drawings in 1989/90. Rachel liked this idea and proposed several ways in which this could be made to work. In the end her contribution took the shape of a number of letters that she sent, expressing her thoughts and her practice. These were displayed when we met to invoke her presence in the studio space.
Team work was my aim for the initiative from the beginning and in this sense I think that it was a success. As always with this kind of thing, some people were around more often than others and people contributed in different ways but I believe that we generally managed to understand and connect with each other.
At the end of the term we hosted an open studios evening to show the individual and collaborative work that we had developed. This was a really positive way of ending this first phase of our collaboration together before the summer break but we intend to continue our work in the future and are preparing an exhibition to be held in Autumn 2018.