Friday, 8 November 2013

Small Change - Claire Weetman and Network Nomadic Architecture - by Zo Maltby-Baker

In the penultimate post in the series of short introductions to the  artists and collectives featuring in Small Change at AirSpace Gallery, Zo Maltby-Baker's spotlight falls on Claire Weetman and Network Nomadic Architecture.

Claire Weetman 

Claire has been commissioned to realise new work in public space, responding to issues of placemaking in Stoke-on-Trent.


Claire studied Fine Art at Liverpool John Moores University (2003). She is a founder member of POST Liverpool, a co-curatorial group of female artists working internationally with European Capital of Culture Cities. 

In 2011 she co-founded the artist-led studios and artist network Platform Art St Helens in her home town. 

Since 2009 Claire Weetman has worked internationally on exchanges, residencies and exhibitions including Linz (AT), Schiedam (NL), Istanbul (TR) and in November 2012 as artist in residence at Shanghai Fine Art University (CN) as part of the METAL International Residency Award to Shanghai.

"Claire Weetman is interested in how her art can be created in public spaces, in the places where the movement that she follows takes place. When situating herself in these locations, she creates interventions that not only document movement, but also seeks to alter the day-to-day movement of people within that space; Lines of water painted onto the floor that people feel the need to jump over, a pedestrian needing to alter their course to pass the artist at work or an audience member 'playing' with the artist drawing a line to see who is in control. Weetman uses drawing processes combined with interventions in public spaces, responding to, recording, measuring and altering movement. Using bold calligraphic lines combined with video projections, she records the motion of people on everyday journeys;  Flowing pencil drawings, charting transient and fleeting traces, noting how movement alters according to environment; Interventions into public spaces interact with an audience by both measuring and interrupting natural movement. Much of Weetman's work is created in a live context, which reflects her wont to document the transient and temporal. This transience translates into notions of presence and absence such as in the fading water traces painted onto a floor in Watermark or the empty outlines that are suggested in her earlier One Minute drawings.In 2012 Weetman became aware that the verb 'trace' and it's literary definitions was a core tenet of her work. The concepts within those descriptions - following a course, marking a position, superimposing lines over things, outlining people and objects - have run through Weetman's entire portfolio of work since 2002 and continue in her most recent works" has produced so much interesting work that it was difficult for me to narrow it down to which ones to share, highly recommend that you visit her website and have a look at all of the work she has produced and been involved with. 

Migrate: 2013
"How do public spaces shape population movement on micro and macro scales?  The Migrate 'prints, are made considering large scale population flows, how mass numbers of people are forced to move from one place to another and how these movements are shaped by natural geography or man made environments.  The one-off prints are created using custom-made rubber stamps, applied repeatedly to the page building up tone and flow." 

3 Masses. 59x84cm
Southern Cross.  59x84cm

Exodus (Syria) 59x84cm



 Crossings: 2006-07


Crossings investigates travelling through a space to document it with a line. Lengths of hessian string have measured the bridges that cross the River Mersey and have been wound into self supporting sculptural columns, each tagged with the location of the crossing.

                                       "Crossings" installed at The Brindley Arts Centre, Runcorn.

Network Nomadic Architecture 
"The Network Nomadic Architecture is an open research laboratory based in Athens, Greece. It is an interdisciplinary network consisted of architects artists, collectives, groups and individuals. Network Nomadic Architecture is interested in public space, territories under crisis, urban transformations and their cultural, social and political extensions. It tries to find methods, practices and conceptual tools for architects to intervene in the contemporary city."

Below is an excerpt from there website about there current Research, 

The center of Athens and its transformation.

How can art assist the situation?

Coordinator: Eleni Tzirtzilaki, Organisation: Nomadic Architecture Network, Georgia Alexandri, Stefanos Handelis

By examining the transformation of the centre of Athens through its contradictions, we concluded that institutions were dysfunctional. Our research focused on the role of art and its potential for contributing to coexistence and multiple belongings by means of innovative practices.

This research project is funded by the Latsi Foundation.

" The actions of Nomadic Architecture take place in public space and in urban voids. They connect the body with the earth of the city through actions of walking, silence, reciting of poems, songs and movement. They connect the participants with those who inhabit the city leading a “bare life”, as they are being increasingly excluded by meta-capitalism. Through these actions Nomadic Architecture suggests a temporary cohabitation in the city based on common goods and free collectivities, which give alternative meanings to our lives."

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