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the nature of things: Jennifer Lee, Hans Stofer and Laura Ellen Bacon Feb 4 - Apr 15, 2012
House curated by Sarah Griffin. In the Artists’ House, the
allocation of function in the architecture dictates the layout and
content of the exhibition. The monumental and uncanny willow
forms by Laura Ellen Bacon dominate the double elevation of
the exterior of the house. Her forms identify its scale and
architectural character – dramatically organic against the
backdrop of modernist rigour.
Hans Stofer takes up residence in the bedroom on the ground
floor, where he unpacks his personal life and turns the room into
a confessional. The most ephemeral and inconsequential of
materials are tenderly remade into jewellery and autobiography,
a mix of found objects made meaningful through artistry and
intention. This very private space requires the viewer to trespass
On the first floor, ceramic vessels by Jennifer Lee revel in light
and space. Born of meticulous research and experiment, the
controlled, poised forms belie their organic hand-built
beginnings. The unglazed surfaces speak of a multitude of
abstracted references, but it is as function and sculpture in
perfect proportion to the human body that they are understood.
Sarah Griffin has described her selection for the exhibition as
follows: In her house, Madeleine Bessborough keeps a table for
her grandchildren with finds from nature and otherwise.
Invariably one will see a bird’s nest, a petrified newt, a dried
allium head, curiously shaped flints, a plastic butterfly. The table
is found in the Cube, itself a carefully curated space, and the
proximity of the specimen table to the art around it is typical of
the way one looks at everything at Roche, with heightened
awareness flipping between display, art, nature, accident and
intent. This way of looking and seeing also informs my selection
of artists for the Artists’ House.