Friday, 8 July 2016

AirSpace Graduate Residents 2016/17

Now into its fifth year, AirSpace is really happy to announce that our two new residents are Tom Verity and Jack Waddington. Tom and Jack will be starting their 6 months residencies towards the end of August, relocating to Stoke-on-Trent and taking advantage of free studio space, monthly meetings with Gallery Directors and invited artists, regular professional development activity, including seminars and trips and exhibition opportunities at the gallery, including of course, the all-important solo show at the end of their time with us.

Tom and Jack are coming to Stoke at a really exciting time for the city, which is in the midst of its Capital of Culture bid preparations - there's loads going on for them to immerse themselves in and we're really excited at the prospect of working with them and seeing how their working practices develop.

Here, Tom and Jack set out their practices and initial hopes for their residencies.

Tom Verity

My practice has a wide spectrum, exploring the relationships between painting and sculpture through the deconstruction of its traditions. My sculpture and installation reference minimalist sensibilities whilst maintaining an improvised, precarious quality that draws upon an interest on how art is physical experienced. My work is comprised of a mixture of natural, every-day and industrial material inspired by a do-it-yourself aesthetic. I aim to make simple, functional artwork that draws open physical material as well as the history of art.

During my residency at AirSpace Gallery I would like to progress my practice maintaining its core values but pushing myself into new areas. I would like to evolve my work to investigate the built environment, examining the role of architectural structures in art and attempt to redefine and redesign them. I hope to create new spaces where art can be performed and displayed in disused areas of the city bringing the art of the gallery out into Stoke. I would like to fully embrace and examine Stoke-on-Trent as a city, investigating its history and its place in the world of 2016.

Jack Waddington

The self-rewarding fundamentals to creating and the compulsive necessity we adopt are what inform my practice. I engage in emotional geography by playfully materialising an imaginary metropolis, through figurative painting and sculptural construction of utopian terrain in miniature fashion. Like a child seeking security by absorbing themselves within pretend narratives, I aim to adopt my ‘inner child’ and nostalgically suggest this process in a sensitive and vulnerable way. Playtime is a form of development and constructing maps is a process of understanding a place. How we reference ourselves within our work is where my sensitivities lie.

During the residency I intend to shift the focus from the private nature of my practice, and absorb myself within Stoke-on-Trent's differing identities. The polycentric distinctiveness of the area, a city of towns, is a curious quality I wish to analyse. I intend to walk and respond to the people and their localities. The navigations across urban landscapes would be revealed through an array of materials that would investigate the duality between looser and tighter approaches in my works. Exploring geographical portraiture I’ll develop locational inspired small-scale models and immediate against intricate drawings and paintings.

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