Exhibition Opening: Thursday 4th July, 6-9pm
Exhibition Continues: 5th-26th July 2019
‘Vipunen’ is an immersive crystallization of a section of the ancient Suomi epic poem ‘The Kelavela’ focusing on the transference of knowledge between the two figures of the giant ogre Anturo Vipunen and the bard shaman Väinämöinen. Andrew Rickett uses this to orientate around his processual and new-materialist practice via geo-processual sedimentation or accretion and the actions of the shaman to gain knowledge.
This poem was formed as a purely oral collection of folk myths during a pre-monotheistic time of time of closer connection between humanity and natural agential forces seen as magic. In seeking the lost words for an incantation to build a ship the wizard Väinämöinen and after searching Tuoni (the lands of the dead) he is informed of Anturo Vipunen by a shepherd. Vipunen the ogre has travelled the world and collected wisdom in the form of song, and to rest became a mountain with his mouth as a cave. The knowledge the giant has collected aggregates with its body and becomes the crystallised and layered in the rock.
This exhibition joins Väinämöinen in the belly of the ogre as he searches and mines the materials or required words and attempts to escape by bashing on Vipunens insides with a birch tree which has sprouted from the nose of the giant.
You enter the main space of Platform arts through the cave mouth of Vipunen formed from a composite image drape of found materials and landscapes which create the ogres rock face. The gallery itself has become the cave belly. Layered relief sculptures of ribs or stalactites dangle from the ceiling formed from greyboard, Itself a composite material. In the centre to one side is the birch tree bashing the wall. Animated by a cog work machine formed form plywood, this is both mining the words and causing the ogre indigestion. The smaller exhibition space holds wall based topographic relief sculptures of the faces of the characters from the Kelavela (Vipunen, Väinämöinen and Louhi Mistress of the North) made from crushed and reformed found materials bound with bio-resin. The accreted materials are loaded with narrative history’s specific to each constituent part, these now blended have become solidified speculative material incantations.
Through working with and reforming atomised or crushed matter Andrew Rickett is involved in a re-working and blending of the experiential vitality and affective qualities of material and objecthood. The act of crushing and reforming is one of destroying material hierarchies; each material be-comes no more or less important that the others, or those used to bind them, in the overall formation of the work. From the anthropocentric per-spective (rather than the object orientated view) each separate material contains loaded histories and narratives from its previous or intended us-age, the coalition of these as mixes of matter becomes a testing of its qualities as blended data, image, histories, scale, utility, reality, and myth.
In the overall creation of these artefacts licence is given to the extra-human processes created by mould, yeast, alchemy and entropy as exter-nal agency, and ambient intelligence. Andrew Rickett has investigated the creation of what he calls ‘mythoglyphs’ as sigils of material and through this cosmic connectivity, and, more recently the effect of geological or chemical processes such as fossilisation or mummification on the biota of earth and its use as time travel.
Andrew Rickett lives and works in London where he exhibits his work as a solo artist but also as one part of the research-practice led duo GOO NO-TORIOUS which describes itself as ‘Adventures in goo, kibble, slime, and primordial materials.’
This exhibition is kindly supported by the Arts Council of Northern Ireland.