Working with cutting-edge science, artist Joey Holder (b1981) has created an immersive clinical environment, into which the visitor enters, wearing blue shoe covers, to be confronted with a larger-than-life MRI scanner, tanks containing dried-out deep-sea creatures, and X-ray light boxes, on which magnified bacteria and a curious skull are displayed. This is Ophiux, a speculative pharmaceutical company of the not-too-distant future, working with synthetic biology, to create new, genetically modified life.
During her 2015 residency at Wysing Arts Centre in Cambridge, Holder was introduced to Dr Marco Galardini, a computational biologist at the European Bioinformatics Institute at the Wellcome Trust Genome Campus, Cambridge, and Dr Katrin Linse, senior biodiversity biologist at the British Antarctic Survey, Cambridge. She has collaborated with them on her research to produce both the installation and the accompanying film, recently premiered at Deptford X, and soon to go on a national tour.
Having studied sciences and art at A-level, Holder chose to follow an artistic career, studying first at Kingston University and later at Goldsmiths University of London, where she obtained her MFA in 2010. Science has remained an enduring interest, however, as have curious and alien life forms, and – no doubt influenced by her time spent as a dive master in Turkey – the underwater world. This complex and thought-provoking exhibition brings together these diverse strands and makes a case for future such discourses between artists and scientists.
Holder showed Studio International around the installation and explained some of the science fact and science fiction involved.
Joey Holder: Ophiux
Wysing Arts Centre, Cambridge
25 September – 20 November 2016
Interview by ANNA McNAY
Filmed by MARTIN KENNEDY
The Deformation Man: David Lynch's Chimerical Universe of Metamorphosis
David Lynch's productions are guided by the theme of metamorphosis. Beginning with his early works, the characters in Lynch's films are undergoing some sort of transformation. The theme was evident in Lynch's first films, for example: a human who is barely considered to be
. Chapelle des Brigittines, Brussels, 2006. Photo: Pierre Wachholder.' style='width: 180px;height:auto' />
Brussels Dispatch: A Review of Some Small and Unusual Spaces for Art
Built in 1663, the Brigittine Chapel has survived a bombardment that turned its surroundings to ashes, and altered its use as a market, a prison and a book warehouse, to an elegant and atmospheric space for art and performance. The building is isolated between former factories and a train line, while on the inside, red brick walls covered by flaking plaster and the remnants of baroque decoration stretch up to dark wooden rafters.
Performance and Play
The curators James Lindon and Erin Manns have taken the idea of the 'absentee performer' as a starting point for this exhibition, and present a wide range of possible formulations of 'performance' in contemporary art. The idea of performance is continually repositioned here to encompass notions of illusion and theatricality, ritual and process, social etiquette and subversive behaviour in which the viewers themselves play a key role.
AfterShock: Conflict, Violence and Resolution in Contemporary Art
The imagery of violence is commonplace today. Hollywood torture films, videoed beheadings, coverage of the tsunami or the twin towers collapsing: it