A few weeks back our tutor put forward a potential exhibition space for us to use. It was in a basement of a pub called “The Flying Dutchman.” Having an exhibition in spaces like this is not uncommon. But what was a bit unusual was that this space was normally used for bondage and fetish parties, whats more, apparently the space is set-up especially for these kind of events!
A group of students decided the opportunity was too good to miss. I put my name down quite late as I was focusing on getting my space ready for our mid-point review. I only ended up seeing the space a few hours before the show was to start. I had been forewarned about the chains and dark basement but not about the red staircase or dodgy looking coloured lights. I absolutely loved it! Sue and Sam from our class decided it would be worth sticking to the theme of fetish, which has appeared on and off in art for centuries. Ruyi Wong, a fellow classmate of mine, who wrote a excerpt for the exhibition quoted ‘Fetish’ as first meaning “objects that are irrationally worshipped and obsessively revered by west african people” but how in western society it refers to non-sexual objects that produce “abnormal sexual stimulus in a observer”. Ruyi goes on to describe how Marcel Duchamp was the first artist to tackle this subject properly with his collections of ready-mades.
I was amazed how many peoples work could fit around this theme and how creative people got. As I unfortunately had very little time to think of a new body of work for the show I tailored one of my glass boxes for the show instead where I exhibited a ‘My Little Pony’ toy I found on a bus a few weeks previously as well as an upside-down drawing of the pony. The piece collaborated rather well with Gin’s fetish toys locked in a tiny cage. I even brought my Mom to the show! Though my sister and I spent a lot of the evening trying to wave her furiously away from Billy’s sound piece, which consisted of edits from 70’s porn films. The sound was emitted from behind a bunch of roses that were falling to the floor. His work was one of my favourites but maybe, not so Mom friendly. As it was a one night show I can’t advise you to all go and see it but there hopefully will be more interesting shows on the horizon!
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