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Chapter Arts Centre: Delaine Le Bas: Witch Hunt
Assembly: Art in the Bar - Fiona Curran
- 5 Feb 2010 to 14 Mar 2010

Current Exhibition


5 Feb 2010 to 14 Mar 2010

Opening times: Monday – Sunday 10am–9pm
Chapter Arts Centre
Market Road
Canton
CF5 1QE
Cardiff
United Kingdom
Europe
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w: www.chapter.org











Fiona Curran, The Insecurity of Territory, 2009
Acrylic on veneered Wooden Panel, 380 × 380 mm
Photo: Peter Hope
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Artists in this exhibition: Delaine Le Bas, Fiona Curran


Delaine Le Bas: Witch Hunt
Assembly: Art in the Bar - Fiona Curran
Fri 5 Feb — Sun 14 March


Delaine Le Bas: Witch Hunt


A special preview night performance featuring Delaine, Damien Le Bas and Mike Rogers.
"He looked so odd that farm labourers would go some way to a void meeting him, and children would call out after him ‘Witch’. And some would call ‘Gypsy’, and to these he would sometimes stop and speak and give them a penny." - Brian Seymour Vesey-FitzGerald, George Borrow, 1953

As part of the UK Romany community (Roma being the largest ethnic minority in Europe), Delaine Le Bas explores many of the experiences of intolerance, misrepresentation, transitional displacement and homelessness that the community continues to face. Witch Hunt is a multimedia project comprising installation, performance and new music. For Chapter, Delaine has created new ecclesial structures reflecting the religious dimension of the ‘Witch Hunt’, weaving within them new work which explores the role of language in identifying the ‘other’.

Witchcraft was built around words, as much dependent on lost ways of speaking as on particular incantations. Witches, like Gypsies, have provoked unmatched levels of hysteria, excitement and persecution. Their tongues may not be forked, but they threaten invisible borders as outsiders camped within.

Linguistic difference has long been a source of conflict and suspicion, as well as pride, in the British Isles. Welsh children were made to wear shaming knots if they spoke their ancestral tongue at school and, to date, the language of Britain’s hundreds of thousands of Romanies gets no mention on the National Curriculum.

The Gypsies, often tried for witchcraft, fared better at preserving their language in Wales than in England. But the grim accusations of witchcraft were made in all of Britain’s languages: "Witch wyti, a myfi a’th profia di yn witch" or "You are a witch, and I will prove you a witch". Political scapegoating may be today’s equivalent of the spiritually bigoted finger-pointing once reserved for those suspected of dark magic.

Witch Hunt was originally shown at aspex Gallery, Portsmouth and has been developed for exhibition at Chapter. Le Bas’ work was also included in Paradise Lost, The First Roma Pavilion, Venice Biennale 2007; Refusing Exclusion, Prague Biennale 3, Prague 2007; Living Together, Museo De Arte Contmeporanea De Vigo, Spain 2009 (curated by Emma Dexter and Xabier Arakistan) and has been shown with Damian Le Bas in an exhibition at D’Vir Gallery, Tel Aviv, in November 2009 (curated by Claire Fontaine). She is included in ‘Sixty Innovators Shaping Our Creative Future’ by Thames & Hudson. Delaine Le Bas is represented by Galleria Sonia Rosso, Turin and Galerie Giti Nourbakhsch, Berlin. She lives and works in Worthing, West Sussex.







Assembly: Art in the Bar - Fiona Curran

Fiona Curran's paintings, collages and installations utilise colour, pattern and landscape imagery to conjure up imagined spaces that play with notions of the natural and the artificial, utopia and dystopia. Curran is interested in the effect of advances in technology on our sense of perception, as we increasingly encounter the world through the screen images of the television, computer, mobile phone, cinema and advertising. These media not only offer ‘action-at-a-distance’ but they inundate us with saturated colour due to light behind and within the screen.

Curran’s recent works engage with the utopian impulse within Modernism referencing geometric forms from this period in our recent history. Her geometries, in contrast to this, explode outwards in fractured bursts of colour; the forms folded over one another; the colours layered in order to ‘contaminate’ their purity through an embrace of heightened (artificial) colour.

For Chapter, Curran is working directly on the Caffi Bar walls to produce a site specific piece that is shown alongside her recent paintings and veneered panels.

Fiona Curran studied for a degree in Philosophy at the University of Manchester before completing a BA and MA in the School of Art at Manchester Metropolitan University. Recent projects include the essay ‘The Space of Language’ in the exhibition catalogue Anne Charnock: Certainty Suspended published by Castlefield Gallery (2008); a site-specific commission for Vital Arts at the Royal London Hospital, Whitechapel (2009); a one-year international artist's residency at The Florence Trust, London (2008-09) and a collaborative work with the Finnish sound artist, Marko Timlin. Forthcoming projects include a site-specific work for the Tatton Park Biennial 2010.

www.fionacurran.co.uk





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