#IRL🦄 Solo Exhibition - Amy Jackson
Time & Location
About the Event
#IRL🦄is a solo exhibition by East London based artist Amy Jackson. Over 15 years after Jackson’s Cleaning Squares, (a conceptual art piece about mental illness) was launched, the artist is unveiling a new happening reflecting the strange times we find ourselves in. #IRL🦄aims to comment upon and cope with the lockdown through art.
Cleaning Squares commented upon the paradoxical human effort to implement rituals, routines and rules and the way in which these systems consume and engulf us whilst their absence leads to anxiety. Disaster can and will often strike.
The Project like much of Jackson’s early work, explored mental health. In the depths of every human psyche lurks immutable fears. These uncertainties manifest themselves in variations of erratic and irrational behaviour. Often, in an attempt to control these fears control is subsequently lost.
In 2005 Jackson began Cleaning Squares. Daily, she would roll die to determine a location. She cleaned and labelled perfect squares with the time and date of the job. The piece was an ongoing performance piece, documented in a series of books and photographs.
In 2020, over 15 years since Jackson cleaned and labelled her first square on top a portaloo in Leeds, the work has become bizarrely prophetic as the world stands together, shattered and confused about the next steps amidst this global pandemic. This body of work will be exhibited alongside new pieces responding to BCV, DCV and ACV (before, during and after coronavirus times) entitled #iamnotarobot and Portraits of Various Resolutions.
The new work responds to the age we are all living through, full of anger, disappointment and fear for the future. Where the square, once a symbol of purity, control and hope has become one of a prison where we find ourselves trapped.
The performance was live streamed on the 2nd of May, followed by a panel discussion about the work. The work is now displayed virtually for the duration of the lockdown and remains in the gallery. Works are on sale, with all profits being donated to Mind.
About the Artist
Born Jacqueline Amy Jackson, in 1986 in Leeds. Graduated from Ruskin School of Drawing and Fine Art at The University of Oxford in 2008. She is an interdisciplinary conceptual artist with 15 years’ experience blending concept, philosophy, science and tools to create immersive experiences in traditional galleries and unconventional spaces. Jackson is also well known for her work in the Responsible Investment space, which she describes as ‘an important part of her activism’. She explores issues such as climate change, conflict, consumerism, social media, mental health and critically, how these themes are inextricably linked. Experience spans public speaking on climate change, responsible investment and group and solo exhibitions. Jackson has several group and solo exhibitions including Cooltzine vol.3 Changes and the highly acclaimed Kensington + Chelsea Art Week.
About the Curator
Carole Pluckrose founded and established The Boathouse CIC with Steve Drury from Rooff Ltd in 2014, with the vision to promote and develop engagement in the arts and offer incubation opportunities for emerging artists and the curation of exhibitions. Alongside her role as Artistic Director of the Boathouse, Carole is an independent writer, director and producer. Following a degree in Drama from Exeter University she co-founded Arc Theatre in 1984. This created a space to experiment and develop her creative, artistic and educational practice. In 1986 she collaborated with Polly Teale (writer) and Julia Bardsley (director) to make a solo performance piece, Fallen, for which she won a Fringe First at the Edinburgh Festival – the catalyst that kick started her professional life and established the company. Carole has a keen interest in training young actors, and also applies these valuable performance skills in her public speaking coaching practice for individuals and groups. Carole is currently researching and developing her latest theatre piece, Notes from Dad’s Room with Ria Knowles.
About the Panel
Julie Scrase studied alongside Amy at the Ruskin School of Drawing and Fine Art in Oxford, where she spent her time writing, drawing and creating odd objects and odder performance which she exhibited in Oxford and London. Julie also has an MA in Comparative Literature and Critical Theory with a special focus on Beckett, Kristeva and the Myth of Orpheus. She now combines a snatched and subterranean engagement in art theory and practice with a career in financial research and editorial. Previously at the FT, then consulting for clients such as McKinsey, HSBC, and Blackrock, she is currently launching data programmes at one of ‘Silicon Roundabout’s Fast growth Fintech Unicorns’. She’s interested in collapsing critical and corporate thinking, ‘knowledge’ and language – to play with and subvert the B***S in both.