Park Ave + resident
Ackroyd & Harvey
Curated by Gregory McCartney
31 May - 15 July 2011
Ackroyd & Harvey's work I came across a decade or so ago and I was fascinated by their ‘living’ landscapes and portraits which lived, which grew, which got older, not in a sinister Dorian Gray manner but rather reflecting the natural and often beautiful aging processes of the subjects. Both landscape and portraiture have traditionally tried to capture a ‘moment’, as if all that mattered was surface dynamics and stasis whilst ignoring the complexities under the surface. An Ackroyd & Harvey artwork grows, literally. In this instance from grass seed bringing home the point that we all share to some extent similar natural cycles and that the natural world is worthy of our protection. The works to be shown in Void Gallery will be actually grown in the gallery from seed (and soil) and have local subject matter in this case houses from the Park Avenue part of Derry and a resident of one of them. The alignment of the panels in gallery 1 mirror the angle the buildings are physically on the street. The houses and human subject matter will literally be part of a vibrant, growing and innovative local landscape. – Gregory McCartney, Curator.
The artists have been collaborating and exhibiting internationally together in galleries, museums and found sites since 1990. Sculpture, photography, science, architecture and ecology are some of the disciplines that intersect in their work, resulting in time-based acts that reveal an intrinsic bias towards process and event. They are acclaimed for their work with the light sensitivity of seedling grass and its ability to record complex photographic images, and have exhibited in galleries, museums and sites worldwide, articulating the seductions of time and visibility inherent in the transient organic image.
In 2007 they created their most ambitious public artwork to date, FlyTower, on the National Theatre's Lyttleton flytower. Here they grew seedling grass directly on the exterior of one of London’s landmarks, transforming this iconic building into a living artwork of massive proportions. (remove – They have also just been commissioned to create a public artwork for the 2012 Olympics.)