Declan Jenkins: Column of Breath

2nd May – 4 June 2016

Reception: 3pm – 8pm Saturday 4 June

Column of Breath presents a new body of work by Declan Jenkins. A set of large woodcut prints will be shown alongside a floor-based installation. The works explore notions of performative presentation while their large scale and brutal mark making translate an intense haptic engagement into theatrical and bombastic form. Jenkins looks to develop an iconography of words as projectiles evoked through a raw pseudo-expressionist visual style of drawing in which text and image hold equal weight. Sci-fi tunnels, vortexes, and holographic designs point to psychedelic dimensions of the self. Spatial and diagrammatic these works draw on aesthetic and formal inspirations as diverse as aboriginal paintings, mandalas and Fontana’s Spatialism.

Recent graduate of the Royal Academy Schools in London, Declan present a vision of the live event through a set of woodcut prints constructed around the subject of a live performance – of performer, audience, props and set. The physical positioning of these elements will be mirrored by that of the prints. Some prints will be stuck onto object­shaped supports becoming sculptural ‘half­forms’­ shadows of what they purport to signify. They will include text and words alluding to objects and sensations surrounding this imaginary event.

Declan is interested in testing how far inert objects can conjure a sense of liveness and to what extent an event is embedded in artefacts and made­up entities. To quote Terence Mckenna, the artist is ‘the person of language’, a shamanic being using art to mediate his own inner reality or perhaps a collective unconscious.

The woodcuts will be produced mainly on­site during the course of the residence. I like the idea of constructing this environment in a site­specific manner, with the work responding to the dimensions of the space.

He is also considering including some performative interventions during the private view. At this stage he is interested in having performers mime bar staff, presenting visitors with invisible canapés and champagne, and perhaps someone opening and closing a fictive door. This mirrors the idea of the prints ‘miming’ a performance or event which isn’t there, the artist as a forcefield or catalyst for a transcendental happening.

Work can be viewed at the receptions (all welcome) or during opening times during the advertised dates of each exhibition 1 – 6pm Thursday – Saturday, at 2 – 4 Highbury Station Road, Highbury Islington N1 1SB, London.  C4RD is a Registered UK Charity 1123530, and would particularly like to acknowledge the support for this exhibition of the Dovehouse Trust.