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The Trouble With Women - Menier Gallery

Exhibition preview

AN EXHIBITION entitled The Trouble With Women will be on display at the Menier Gallery from February 16 to February 20, 2010.

It’s an exhibition that brings together an eclectic body of work from a small group of Fine Art graduates from Central St Martins.

The show is a humorous, lively yet sometimes dark exploration of femininity in a postmodern post feminist world. It is an exploration of women’s interior worlds as well as the way they are perceived and represented today.

The works examine notions of femininity as enduring as motherhood and sexuality but also the ever changing expectations of women.

Amélie Mourgue d’Algue takes inspiration from her experiences and those collected from others. Seeking the universal in the singular, these anecdotal tales are weaved into exploration of society and politics. Combining a variety of mediums from collage to sound, found or made objects and text, Amélie’s current work is concerned with the emotional ambivalence and social ambiguity associated with contemporary motherhood.

Amanda Mulquiney is interested in the frisson between surface and imagery and the condition and inclination to turn what is seen into something representative. Her work in this show combines research steeped in the study of the pathological gesture, conundrums of the dream state and hysteria – historically thought to be solely a feminine illness. She uses collage and mixed media and produces what she describes as “two and a half dimensional paintings”.

Rosa Robert’s works bring together her interest in consumerism and figurative painting. Portraits of women and self-portraits are juxtaposed with pithy sloganised statements based on material desires and self-improvement mantras. Her message is comical yet strained and focus on the preoccupation with and impossibility of women “Having it all”.

Alli Sharma’s continued interest in identity and memory has led her to examine a children’s board game she once coveted as a child. The Magic Magic Magic game includes tricks which need to be performed using the magician’s assistant, a female role model and object which fascinated her as a child. Based on this game, Alli’s still life paintings rely heavily on gesture and colour and the iconic appeal of children’s toys and plastic figurines.

Nastja Rönkkö and Luke Turner’s collaborative practice is an investigation into the nature of subjectivity, desire and fantasy. Shaped by a shared fascination with the materiality of the artwork, their processes seek a means by which to grant such desires presence, engendering a birth into the world of the image.

Their current project, Hairbath, uses the motifs of hair, breast, mountain and cake to oscillate between states of human and animal, portrait and landscape. The metaphorical slippages therein allude to a peculiar and enticing world, embodying an almost edible materiality.

Coral Churchill is interested in intuitive art and the role of the woman as creator. The subconscious and the symbolic are central concerns, while automatism is interwoven with observational work. Recent work reflects the social construct of femininity in a patriarchal society, looking at transformation and the shape shifter archetype.

Times: Tuesday to Friday from 10am to 6pm, Saturday from 10am to 3pm.

Private View: February 16 from 6pm to 8.30pm.

Menier Gallery, 51 Southwark St, London, SE1 1RU