Reconfiguring the overall body in up to date pictures

Reconfiguring the figure in modern day artwork At Timothy Taylor, New York, a new exhibition, ‘Reconfigured’…

Reconfiguring the figure in modern day artwork

At Timothy Taylor, New York, a new exhibition, ‘Reconfigured’ – featuring work by Polly Brown – invitations us to re-look at the entire body as a subject

In ‘Reconfigured’, curated by Rose Easton, the function of 10 United kingdom-centered artists spanning painting, sculpture, pictures, print, movie, and animation, challenges our preconceptions of how the entire body can be depicted in up to date art. 

Photographer Polly Brown’s get the job done usually reveals things of a body – commonly her personal – in conceptual, typically humorous compositions. As she describes additional, ‘the use of the determine in my images has largely been one of operation. A hand or foot is there to activate the scene a flailing limb purposefully remaining in the shot details to the kinetic. The entire body is often just yet another prop, a instrument to further more the established up of the image.’

Top: Polly Brown, Kerosene, 2021. Silver gelatin print, soot, glass, wooden frame. Previously mentioned: Delicate Trigger, 2021. Silver gelatin print, glass, triangular wooden frame. Photography: Theo Christelis. Courtesy the artist and Timothy Taylor, London / New York

Brown produced a new physique of do the job for ’Reconfigured’, loosely responding to the 19th-century French author Felix Fénéon’s Novels in 3 Strains. Here, we see sculptural nevertheless lifes blur our perceptions of the figure and extract just a whisper of narrative to attract us in. The photographer speaks about the new series in the context of her wider follow: ‘The method of generating this new sequence has evolved and formalised my works’ relationship to the system. I noticed these new operates additional as obscured portraits.’

In ‘Reconfigured’, The human body becomes not just a prop, but also a blank canvas. ‘Using sculptural factors (soot, clay, metallic and wooden) merged with prints and domestic props, I observed I could use the determine to convey total narratives,’ she claims. ‘I preferred how this reductive type mirrored the writings of Fénéon. Characters and their fates could be symbolised in tiny gestures or poses. The entire body was at after a butcher, a baker and a candlestick maker.’ 

Deep dive, 2021, Silver gelatin print, glass, pewter puddle (melted jugs, plates, buttons, wine cup, candlesticks and tea pot). Photography: Theo Christelis. Courtesy the artist and Timothy Taylor, London / New York

As Easton states of Brown’s function, ‘when considering about distinctive strategies to look at the body and its many guises, I have generally liked Polly’s remedy of the figure in her ongoing apply — abstracted, playful, uncomfortable, with a gentle trace of irony.’ 

‘Reconfigured’ – which also options modern artwork by Isabella Benshimol Toro, Onyeka Igwe, Gabriella Boyd, Matt Copson, Patrick H. Jones, Olu Ogunnaike, George Rouy,  Mike Silva and Jala Wahid – gives an unique and unexpected exploration of the figure, as Easton concludes, ‘especially in this contemporary moment’. §