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IAS Vulnerability Seminar: Landscapes of Vulnerability - A conversation wit...

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IAS Common Ground, Ground Floor, South Wing, Wilkins Building, UCL

Gower Street

WC1E 6BT

United Kingdom

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IAS Vulnerability Seminar

Landscapes of Vulnerability: A conversation with artists Lola Frost and Edmund Clark

What is the relation of vulnerability to precarity, fragility and risk in the making of art? How might art make visible vulnerable states and subjects in ways that challenge conventional aesthetic, political and social categories, subverting existing hierarchies of power while staging quiet, yet potent, modes of dissent?

Anna Marazuela Kim, IAS Fellow, writer and photographer brings two artists into conversation whose new bodies of work, in painting and photography, bring into view bodies confined both institutionally and psychically.

Speakers

Lola Frost, painter

Merleau-Ponty’s phrase ‘The Flesh of the world’, as a metaphor for an aesthetically attuned and reversible process in which “doubling, difference and desire” are “crocheted into all that is there”, serves as a template for exploring the risks, precarities and vulnerabilities of Frost’s painted landscapes of an improper uncanny sublime (see image above). The artist’s presentation will explore the subversive interventions of her practice within the tradition of the sublime in painting. Such subversion extends to the performance of ‘doubling, difference and desire’ as a riposte to a social and perceptual imaginary preoccupied with subject-object and mind-body dichotomies and hierarchies. This is an imaginary which continues to sustain masculine privilege, the repression and regulation of the ‘carnal’, cognitive control, visual mastery and instrumental and purposive reason. This norm-contesting practice invites us to consider the risky and transient vulnerabilities of unguarded and libidinal psychic life, opening up the productive potential of ‘the precarious encounter’.

Edmund Clark, photographer

My Shadow’s Reflection is part of a new body of work by the artist-in-residence of Europe’s only entirely therapeutic prison environment, HM Prison Grendon. Clark’s photographs comprise architectural images of the prison, pinhole images of the occupants, and close-ups of flora and fauna growing in situ, picked and pressed by the artist. Opened in 1962, the prison’s inmates agree to accept responsibility for their offences, offering full-time commitment to intensive group therapy while exercising a degree of control over the day-to-day running of their lives via democratic decision-making. Through research and evaluation, evidence shows that Grendon reduces levels of violence and disruption, while lowering reoffending levels after release. In Place of Hate, the exhibition of Clark’s work as the prison’s artist-in-residence, showed at Ikon, Birmingham until 11 March 2018. The exhibition combines photography, video and installation to explore ideas of visibility, representation, trauma and self-image, addressing how prisoners and the criminal justice system are perceived and discussed by the public, politicians and media in Britain today.

This event will be followed by a reception. All welcome.

First Image: Lola Frost, The Flesh of the World

Second Image: Edmund Clark, My Shadow's Reflection

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IAS Common Ground, Ground Floor, South Wing, Wilkins Building, UCL

Gower Street

WC1E 6BT

United Kingdom

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