An ebb and flow of sculptures and drawings have appeared and disappeared on the floors and walls of the studio since Aid & Abet started their Residency at North West Cambridge Development. Assembled and disassembled, inscribed and erased, the works disappear as quickly as they appear in a process of constant engagement with the site, reflecting the pace of change that the surrounding landscape is undergoing.
Every week there is a new configuration of found objects in David Kefford's sculptures made from discarded items he has found during walks across the site. These sculptures almost seem to tremble with a sense of human vulnerability and sensitivity whilst also alluding to the constant presence of the development's processes and machinery churning at the landscape. A dirty torn plastic glove is tied with a bit of string hanging off a gnarled branch, the sculpture evokes a range of images from birds to male body parts. There is a dramatic play with scale and pathos here, along with a dry sense of humour. Precariously placed on the floor, the sculptures' vulnerability is enhanced.
Sarah Evans' drawing similarly focuses on the overlooked, the weeds that continue to thrive across the site or a pile of displaced broken concrete slabs. Her drawing of the dry structure of a thistle reminds me of Lois Weinberger's film, Datura, 1996. Although it's fourteen years since I have seen this film, looking at the drawing I can suddenly clearly recall the abrasive sounds of the film's soundtrack of a brittle plant being relentlessly snipped into pieces. One windy day I see Sarah standing very still in front of the huge willow tree opposite the studios, near the artists' cottages. She is filming the swaying dance of the tree's branches in the high wind.
Both David and Sarah find beauty in the everyday, recording 'the rhythm and flow of existing natural forces versus the predetermined plans for a new development'. They reveal a drama in the minutiae of natural objects or discarded man-made objects, a poetic journey that captures a narrative of human relations to landscape. It's a quiet but compelling narrative and I'm totally hooked.
Artist Residency Programme Coordinator for North West Cambridge Development
See aidandabetprojects.tumblr.com for the latest from Aid & Abet's Residency at North West Cambridge Development