Denouement - Collective exhibition

Opening night Friday September 28th, 6pm 

Open Tuesday-Saturday from 12noon-late until October 12th

Denouement - the outcome of a situation, when something is decided or made clear.
Denouement is an exhibition of works by a collective of Leeds based artists. The work in this exhibition explores beauty as an experience rather than a trait or concept. Touching on themes that arise when you think of that experience itself instead of the beautiful thing you are looking at. The name of the exhibition indicates the outcomes all the artists have submitted from exploring this topic in their own way.

Featuring work by:
Lewis Andrews // Anna Bolam // Alice Jones // Isabella McGough // Toby Noon // Seren Oakley // Annie Varrall

Artist Statements

Lewis Andrews

Our universe consists of a force known as dark matter. We can’t see it or detect it directly, but we know it’s there from how it effects light from distant galaxies. With the help of gravity, dark matter gets pulled into strands and filaments which join and connect to each other. This repeats itself across the entire universe in a vast cosmic web. Within these strands and filaments are pockets of ordinary matter where galaxies form.

The spider web is very similar to the structure of the universe. However, the fact is that these complicated web-like structures are also in your own body and all around you. Ranging from brain neurons, plant roots, veins all the way up to the dark matter web of the universe. Whatever experience that you feel, it couldn’t have been done without these complicated structures. We’re all connected by some sort of web-like structure. Think of our galaxy and yourself then as a tiny water droplet on a filament of a spider’s web when it comes to the dark matter web. However, be thankful that your able to live because of the web-like structures within you.

cracked denouement collective art exhibition

(Lewis Andrews)

Seren Oakley

I think that beauty is more than a trait, it is a subjective experience, and through visual art works I am currently exploring this further. I think people focus primarily on the aesthetic beauty of thing, when beauty is an experience, we experience beauty, so what encourages that experience? I’m exploring that as everyone’s reality is different and subjective.

Your experience of something is what makes it beautiful. To experience beauty as a form of pleasure you must think. It’s a far broader spectrum than our social constructs have put in place.

grass man denouement collective art exhibition

(Seren Oakley)

Anna Bolam

While plants and humans have many things that set them apart, a sense of growth and beauty are two key things I often see and interpret through my work. By putting them alongside each other it has allowed me to encourage these ideas and see both myself and my plants thrive because of it. Focusing on my own body or of those I find beautiful, paired with plant life and equally appealing visuals, I aim to create pieces that show a hazy uplifting passion. My work is an appreciation of these things, and this personal growth.

Being a surface pattern designer I have experimented both with self-portraits and with taking some of my drawings into more pattern based designs. Focusing mainly on a coming together of strong femininity, confident line work and expression are key with heavy textural elements and areas of relief. Both thoughtfulness and playful aspects are integral to my working process; believing in freedom to full express and explore ideas/processes while giving space for more meticulous working methods. Illustrative and painterly elements are present as ever in my work, yet in a more driven way than I’ve previously worked and one that reflects my own progress.

garden soundsystem denouement collective art exhibition

(Toby Noon)

Alice Jones

Violence is the earliest form of entertainment. During the Roman Empire gladiator fights were the height of entertainment. When we think about the Roman period we know this is BC. When Anno Domini began we are informed of the miracles and wonder of Jesus Christ; the saviour. All connotations to the introduction of Jesus’s miracles are holy and pure. Artists began to create religious paintings which were a homage to their faith. However, these paintings and this period were even more violent than BC, depicting Jesus’ trial and execution.

You can still find these classical oil paintings hung in galleries across the world. Even in homes you find wooden ornaments depicting the execution of Christ. It feels almost paradoxical that we reflect on these images as beautiful and holy when they are actually disturbing and violent. As time goes on we have developed a tolerance to violence, with horror movies introducing more gore, more torture and more shock value than ever. Blockbuster movies use this same paradox; something holy (a nun), or something beautiful (a young woman) and match them with evil and violence. We continue to use violence as a form of entertainment, including boxing, dog fighting, bdsm, wrestling. Is suffering beautiful? Is it entertaining? Is the victim close to God as they suffer in the same way he did? Or are we all just fascinated with capturing a glimpse of death?

blood teeth denouement collective art exhibition)

(Alice Jones)

Annie varrall

Dreams are deeply unique and personal, a window into parts of us we can’t access voluntarily which not only help us deal with and realise our emotions, but tell amazing stories. Exploring dreams through art allows us to visually retell those stories, putting pieces of ourselves we sometimes don’t even know into our work, and celebrating the nocturnal storytellers who live inside us, who we will never meet, but who we take for granted. I hope you enjoy the stories of my dreams. 

lonley girl denouement collective art exhibition

(Annie Varrall)

Isabella McGough

I found myself drawn to film and also to surreal things I see in my everyday life; things that people may find irritating like spelling/grammar errors on signs, obnoxiously coloured adverts in shop windows, something really odd and artificial within an otherwise natural space that may put people on edge or annoy them. I like these things. They humour me in the subtlest of ways and I really wanted to find some way of adding these things to video and photography as well as other potential media, although digital media is where I’m drawn to the most at the moment in my practice and believe it conveys my ideas the best currently. I hope to maybe see if people can see these anomalies in the same light and humour as I see them in, that’s almost a goal of these current pieces that I’m working on, if not, I want to know how these pieces make people feel. I combine these images with traditionally beautiful images to create odd juxtapositions. How does this make you feel?