Saturday, August 26, 2006

Grand Designs and artists in residence


The Artist in Residence at Chelsea College of Art has initiated an interesting project on the parade ground of a former barracks at Millbank - opposite the Tate Gallery - which now houses one of the buildings of the Chelsea College of Art

Graham Hudson, the Artist in Residence, received a Henry Moore Fellowship and has been responsible for the development of a number of temporary constructions on the site. The latest press item in the long list of references to the project in "The Graham Hudosn Archive" on the Chelsea College website states (which is not attributed byt I think he wrote it!)

Hudson embraced the residency and its grandiose setting, with wit and critique, by building, opening, and 'living' in his studio on one of London's most visible plots. As the months progressed more and more sculptures and events have taken place. And the visibility afforded by the location has encouraged people to interact with and react to the work on the previously barren ground, now (temporarily) its a genuine public square, even if the seating is a little wonky, and the sculptures a little too 'weather-responsive'.

....Hudson's six month performance of live-work constructions on the parade ground won't stop until that day, until such time objects can still be seen half made (or half collapsed) and view the artist and his assistants cable-tying, taping, (and lunching) until the end of the 1st, because then the accumulation and construction, turns to dissemination and re-allocation.

The evening of the 1st will see a live 'no-reserve price' auction of the residency's 'Sculpture Collection'. Half desperate effort at a site clearance (to save on skip bills), and half jibe at the market-mastery of art production. For one night only see an auctioneer wheeled around on a scaff tower (including hard hat and high-vis) it's a great chance to pick up a bargain - then the grave problem of how to get it to your garden.

So what does it all look like? The structures are all made from any material that could be recycled - from old artistic developments, skips, building sites etc and have been put together with varying degrees of 'expertise'. I gather the project was at least partly related to the limited access students have to studios and hence a number of the structures have also acted as temporary studios.

Hudon's own structure - a studio 'house' with a double bow front at first floor level - looks like it was nodding hard in the direction of some of the houses along Cheyne Walk which look over the Thames and have been the home of many famous and creative people (and I never knew Keith Richards used to live at No 3 until I found the wikipedia link for Cheyne Walk! Really?).

This sketch was done after I left the Constable Exhibition at the Tate on Thursday evening. One of the students was busily revamping her structure and I drew her as she appeared on and about her 'studio'.

I wonder how much they're going to go for at auction? You too can attend - as the archive states
This is an RSVP invitation event. For a place on the guest list please email: rsvp@arts.ac.uk
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