Visit to Studio Voltaire

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On a grey day in May, we were greeted by the fantastically cheerful cartoonish cardboard cut-outs of voluptuous ladies with an attitude, painted by one of the hottest young artists of the moment, Ella Kruglyanskaya. Represented by Gavin Brown’s Enterprise, the works on view sold out almost immediately and we are all eagerly awaiting her next show. They feel like a contemporary version of Alex Katz’s 1980s cut-outs that Timothy Taylor gallery showed earlier in the Spring.

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But onto the main event of the evening! We had a tete-a-tete with two fantastic artists, Amy Stephens and Frances Richardson.

Amy is a sculptor whose pared down, thoughtful (and at times playful) minimalist pieces are a wonderfully refreshing antidote to the digital age in which we live where we are inundated with images. Her use of materials can range from bronze to glass to scavenged materials, giving the viewer pause to contemplate and appreciate various textures and interactions with the space around. She is also wonderfully eloquent about her work, which you can read more about here.

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Afterwards, we visited the studio of sculptor and draughtsman,  Frances Richardson whose incredibly intricate drawings are at the intersection of art and mathematics. She has launched an investigation to explore the infinite through her pencil drawings that are wonderful marvels in themselves (and impossible to appreciate on a computer screen and even worse, an iPhone screen!): from far away the shapes appear shaded but close up, one realises that the mark making is comprised of an infinitesimal number of plus and negative signs and numbers.

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I always love seeing artists’s inspirations and Frances’s desk was chock-full of them, from organic matter to Renaissance treasures. From the Albrecht Durer ‘Melanchony’ woodcut to Baldovinetti’s portrait of a Woman.

Nestled in a former church in the heart of Clapham, Studio Voltaire is a non profit space that organises exhibitions and also houses the studios of 45 artists. Don’t miss the yearly Studio Voltaire ‘Pop Up Shop’ with amazing holiday goodies made by super famous artists.

For more information, visit: www.studiovoltaire.org

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