We Can Have It All
Room 2

2012. Mounted Prints. SPACEX, Exeter.

8 December 2012–23 February 2013

Sculptural and photographic works explore and respond to human relationships and negotiation with the inanimate objects or ‘stuff’ of the world. White considers value, profile, association and the meaning of individual and collections of objects in specific circumstances. Relationships are created and questions are provoked in relation to these various ‘art’ objects concerning value and taste, and our relationship to consumer culture.

Upon entering the exhibition, viewers will locate themselves within a historical context referencing particular sculptural languages including classicism and figuration, modernism; particularly abstraction. Displayed on bespoke plinths, works sit on the boundaries of ’art objects’. It is the trail of pastiche and replica objects, such as a souvenir or reproduced garden statue, in the aftermath of valued objects and sculptures that are addressed and challenged. Every item is treated with a regard to its visual aesthetic, production, and authorship, as even the cheapest item has been designed by someone and has value to somebody. References to artists such as Hepworth, Gabo, and Picasso become apparent with influence from Bauhaus designers such as Theodor Bogler and Gerhard Marcks. White reduces articles to the same material and level of craftsmanship, thus confusing their status.
New photographic works play with scale and placement, materiality and craftsmanship. These are a weave of manipulation and contradiction, a simultaneous promotion and devaluation of photography and documented objects. Large-scale prints mounted on boards displayed in an unconventional manner invite the viewer to gather their own understanding of the value, status and authorship of the ornate objects being represented.

White considers all objects she encounters, whether in bricolage and charity shops, churches or museums. The way she negotiates these objects is both investigative and anthropological, considering aesthetic judgement and taste. She responds with equal attention to a 15th Century Italian bust in Italian marble and granite, as she would a highly crafted copy made to order in China.

We Can Have It All presents a timely investigation into pre-conceived ideas and conditions that trigger our understanding of the everyday. These ideas and conditions shift and alter through investigation and understanding of the work, be that visual or contextual. Through breaching the boundries of socially constructed catagories, White suggests that it may just be possible to ‘have it all’.


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