Leaving Home at Contemporary Applied Arts, London

Leaving Home at Contemporary Applied Arts 89 Southwark Street, London SE1 0HX April 17 – May 31, 2015

What happens when site specific installations are moved to a new setting? Does the work either gain or lose significance when it is taken out of its original contextual setting? Leaving Home explores these questions and more in a group show at CAA, guest curated by Matt Smith, Polly Harknett and Caitlin Heffernan. Redeploying contemporary craft objects originally made to be shown in the recent ‘Unravelled’ series of exhibitions at three National Trust properties in the South East, Leaving Home includes work by CAA members Sally Freshwater, Robert Cooper and Matt Smith, as well as a number of guest artists. The show spotlights conceptual explorations in contemporary craft that are not simply exercises in stretching and developing maker practice and current dialogue about the applied arts: the work shown in Leaving Home is also diverse, intriguing and of exceptional quality.
In the words of Matt Smith: “It is easy to assume that objects made for white cube spaces and those created for site specific installations are diametrically opposed.  In reality, the journey of many artworks moves from the lived-in space of the studio, into the white cube public gallery space and then, sometimes, back into the lived-in space of the collector’s home.  The contexts for most artworks are therefore temporal.  We were interested in how these site specific works, commissioned for Unravelling the National Trust, would navigate with these changing contexts – from home to gallery – and in particular with the white cube space at CAA which is, to some extent, imbued with the associations of domesticity that still often linked with the applied arts.” Featured makers: Lauren Adams, Andrew Burton, Robert Cooper and Stella Harding, Steven Follen, Sally Freshwater, Gav Fry, John Grayson, Penny Green, Caitlin Heffernan, Zoe Hillyard, James Hunting, Agnes Jones, Lisa Pettibone, Matt Smith, Alec Stevens, Julian Walker. http://www.caa.org.uk/exhibitions/archive/2015/leaving-home/

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