It's degree show season, which means the Cass Art #StudentSpotlight is back in town!
With our team of Cass Art Student Ambassadors we will be bringing you highlights from the degree shows around the country. Let us begin with The Slade School of Fine Art, reviewed by art student and soon-to-be-Slade-graduate Jadé Fadojutimi.
Above Image: Paintings by Daria Gitmanovitch
The Slade School of Fine Art BA Degree show features a great variety of painting, sculpture and other media. Famous for alumni like Antony Gormley, Rachael Whiteread and Douglas Gordon, Phyllida Barlow and Lucien Freud have also taught at the school, and such a reputation will not disappoint. The paintings, from purely abstract material investigations through to highly representational depictions, are bold and ambitious. Daria Gitmanovich’s work stands out with her layering of paint and textiles. Alfred Worrall breaks up the space with his humorous anthropomorphic sculptures. The works and installations on the second floor submerge you into a dark sombre world of mysterious figures and signs. Emerging from the dark, you reach a calming room filled with a light-reflective iridescent sculpture by Nancy Huang, and soothing paintings by Jade Fadojutimi. Read on for further highlights.
Jadé Fadojutimi, Swamp, Acrylic and Pastel on Canvas, 140 x 110cm
Jadé Fadojutimi’s paintings explore abstract places that exist in the mind and take on the form of landscapes. Her work explores whether there is a close relationship between childhood experience, longing, memories, trauma as well as escapism that can be understood and explored through painting. Her work draws upon a lack of understanding and worry about one’s place in society and the subsequent romanticising of an alternate place; whether it’s of the physical or imaginary world. She’s engaged by the touch of the material on the surface, excited by how painting can be emotional, fragile and delicate. Her initial process is intuitive, starting with a mark or colour and evolving into landscape elements often becoming atmospheric. Each painting is an exciting and engaging discovery process, which almost becomes musical. She says, “I’m always striving for that place that’s subjectively beautiful.”
Neena Percy, How You Like It, Oil and Acrylic on canvas, 190 x 250cm
Neena Percy’s paintings engage with representations of femininity, sensuality and decoration in surreal portraits. Through direct bold paintings she interweaves motifs between the paintings to allow the viewer to make connections that allow a deeper questioning of portraiture. Shiny luscious paint depicts hair that metamorphoses into blobs of colour that contrast with dark, patterned backgrounds as the artist brings together pop and classical references to the nude in art history. Tying the group of paintings together, a subtle shimmering trail of paint creates a border around the room while the black glossy floor adds to the slick feel of the room. It is joyous and colourful with an underlying questioning, making the truly absurd seem completely possible.
Lara Smithson, Mute World, Mixed Media Installation
Looking beyond the surface of both painting and cinema, expanding their presumed time scapes, Lara Smithson exposes the illusion of both the painted image and the cinematic. Working on glass in oil paint these slides become the backdrops and frames for films of an Interworld: a place between digital image and painting. The camera acts as an eye into these painted worlds, merging brushstrokes with the constructed realities in studios and outside. They evoke memories of myth, stories and dreams. She has been playing with the idea of the cave versus the screen. They share many traits; obscuring, hiding and suggesting a hidden depth, while also contradicting these properties due to their inherent flatness. The result is a depth from suspension on the physical and imagined flat.
Joe Wycherley, At the heart of everything lies deceipt, Mixed Media
Check out the show before it ends on Thursday 28th May.
Addess: Slade School of Fine Art, Gower Street, London, WC1E 6BT. Saturday 23rd May – Thursday 28th May. Weekend: 10am – 5pm. Weekdays: 10am – 8pm
Follow Cass Art on Twitter and search #StudentSpotlight for all of our degree show features this season.