Private View: Friday 7 August 6 – 9pm with performance. All welcome.
Exhibition: Saturday 8 – Sunday 30 August 2015
Performance: Saturday 22 August 1pm
Artist / Curator Talk: Saturday 22 August 2pm
VITRINE Bermondsey Square present You Promised Me Poems, the first solo exhibition of London based artist Leah Clements.
Clements’ practice is formed through the construction of social situations and looks at the oddities of normality and human relationships. Her recent work focuses on empathy and the role of the audience. Through performance, meetings, video, organised group and individual encounters, Clements investigates the role of the audience within contemporary art, often focusing on minor gestures or oddities that reveal subtle or complex power structures.
For the exhibition Clements transforms VITRINE Bermondsey Square’s unconventional 16 metre gallery. The space becomes an intimate setting that shifts between an activated and deactivated state to explore ideas of intimacy as an aesthetic and a notional concern.
The work is not immediately recognisable but physical enough to form a moment of wonder. The space largely rests empty, particularly so if visited in its deactivated state, though the disembodied results of a performance on the evening of the private view plays throughout as an audio work, interested in the remnants that are left by transferences from one body to another, or from body to object; it will continue to speak of the physicality of pain caused by a close relationship long after the sources are gone.
Similar concerns of transference are explored in a current work held at Open School East; The Empath Project, which looks at the personality type ‘Empath’: someone who is highly empathetic, sometimes to the point of their detriment. The project begins with an online personality test that facilitates discussion around what this diagnosis may mean whilst questioning individual and group identity around it.
In a performance taking place within Bermondsey Square on Sunday 22nd August, Clements explores forms of intimacy where the audience’s experience of the piece is determined by the results of a personality test.
In conjunction with the exhibition, a publication of the same name has been formed, focussing on Clements’ research, it acts as a tangible element to the ephemeral nature of the exhibition that further explores and sustains these ideas.
Leah Clements (b.1989, UK) lives and works in London. She graduated from Goldsmiths College in 2013 with a BA (hons) in Fine Art. Exhibitions and events include: Empath Project, ongoing, Open School East, London (2015), Enclosures, Canal, London, The Day Job, Hoxton Basement, London (2014) Show, But Also Tell, King’s College Anatomy Museum, London (2014) Thirteen Video Art Festival, Stockholm (2013) LUPA 18, LUPA, London (2013) Innit, 68m2 Copenhagen (2013) Co.lab.5, SUMMIT Gallery, London (2012) Dark Therapy, Goldsmiths College, London (2012) and Freshly Scratched, Battersea Arts Centre, London (2011).
Chris Bayley (b.1991, UK) is a Curator and Writer based in London. He graduated in 2012 with a BA in Illustration and in 2014 graduated with an MA in Museum and Gallery Studies, Curatorial Pathway. Much of his research focuses on discursivity, art discourse and the educational turn, with a particular focus on supplementary formats as a tool for thinking about exhibition making such as the catalogue, the interview and the event as demonstrated within ‘The Day Job’, Hoxton Basement (2014); an exhibition of Gallery Assistants employed at Serpentine Galleries, London. Recent curated shows include: Rebecca Molloy, Till Death do us Party, VITRINE Bermondsey Square (2015) and An evanescent fix (co-curated with Alys Williams), VITRINE (2015).