Written by Barbara Mal
Fresh from the success of their work in Brave New World at London Art Fair 2012, artists Jane Ward and Reginald S. Aloysius have joined forces for the sake of creating a wonderful showcase (called Wanderlust) at Bearspace to a swarm of avid spectators.
Capturing, thought-provoking objects d’art of both Jane Ward and Reginald S. Aloysius made me realize the hidden meaning behind the exhibition’s title, which actually is a strong desire for voyage. Indeed, I felt like I was wandering, with a desire to find out more about artifacts stored in that confined space… Scattered bits and pieces, abstract lines and blurred images through which one could have possibly discovered silhouettes and patterns enchanted mind into the state of trance.
How to say it… They brought home more than a bacon, I guess. For me, it was not as simple as four walls fully decorated with paintings. But then again, the question is, if that was a stroke of luck or fruit that my vast imagination bore? Or was it intentional aim of the artists, to make me feel like I did? Perhaps, I was the only one that was trying to dig into the past memories of journeys I had and glue fragments, that in reality would never stick together anymore? With multifarious doubts and planted scepticism seed I yet carried on roaming in that pocket-size room, starting from the first painting to the final figure countless times. With the rising number of questions, of course.
Pieces instigated thoughts related to travelling and scattered worlds that were created by artists represented the capacity of memory and recollection, which later on I confirmed with the artists themselves. The simple beauty of imperfection in retention of a human and its tendency to fracture. It made me think about how much I remember from the trips I took? Bits and pieces of a world that looks more imaginative than real now (was sort of conclusion).
Was I even there?
While I was busy getting lost in the train of thoughts the ticket conductor in me politely asked to leave, since I’ve noticed some questionable details in one of the works of R. Aloysius. The patterns reminded me rather of an eminent building. It was subtly hidden though (not trying to say that I’m subtle, but I did spent quite a lot of time there). As later on I confirmed, indeed it was. The author is from Sri Lanka, same as for the building. Which actually symbolizes traditions of his nation.
R. Aloysius works are made on MDF (medium-density fibreboard). The artist shared that he used nearly 20 coats of white paint and that the graphite to shade was utilized. His engraved strokes, painted with colour, were inspired by traditional Indian saris and it appears that fundamentally Aloysius’ work explores themes of lost traditional values in multinational communities.
J. Ward art pieces are based on hierarchy of the memories. Some parts of her work are indistinct, scattered, unlike others, which point out that the memories are fading or viceversa. Her dreamlike pieces are made by the technique of layering digital print, then carefully removing the surface ink. The artist noted that she is inspired by natural calamities, such as cunamies and tornadoes.
Overall, the pieces of art of both artists’ transferred me (hopefully others as well) into the world of wander and exploration. One can clearly see what sort of message authors wanted to send to the audience, but at the same time place for interpretation was left.
Since the exhibition left a huge impression on me, I decided to follow both artists and track their newest works, and perhaps changes in the technical side of their practice. Exhibition happened in March, so quite some time has passed, however artists who both live in London apparently were harder to track than I’ve imagined. There are no traces left, perhaps they are travelling for inspiration? Well, I guess this story ends in an interesting manner. They wander. And me? I’m left to lust for more of their work.