Fertile Ground Rebecca Ackroyd
Peres Projects is pleased to present Fertile Ground, Rebecca Ackroyd’s (b. 1987 in Cheltenham, UK) first solo exhibition in Asia.
Made up of new works on paper as well as two sculptures, Ackroyd describes an encounter with a building site in London as the impetus for this exhibition. A deep gash in the ground, reveals a complex system of pipes and metal within the foundation of the planned structure. In Fertile Ground, the artist explores the infrastructure of the subconscious, and the subterranean workings of memory.
The materials for the foundation of a building are heavy, made up of stone, concrete and steel. Yet Ackroyd’s works are anything but stable, her surreal compositions of mundane and domestic subjects such as fasteners and drains trigger a feeling of failed recognition, eliding fixed meaning, and despite the rosy color palette of soft pinks, reds, greens and oranges, invoke an uncanny atmosphere and an emotionally ambiguous charge.
The exhibition is punctuated by a repeating spiral pattern which feels as if it leads us into the recesses of the psyche. This visual symbol for time references Ackroyd’s ongoing dialogue with psychoanalysis, and the dialectical relationship between memory and the subject. A central tension in her work is the rehearsal of the past in the present, and the slippery and fragmented character of memory, distorted in time through its retelling and repetition and how this nonetheless provides the structure of the subconscious and the foundation for the present.
In the titular sculpture, the artist has cast herself wearing a pair of her mother’s boots in epoxy resin. The torso and legs are separated, suspended above and within a metal cage, while circular saw blades are positioned in the place of the diaphragm and below the seat of the legs. The translucent material and fragmented, rough edges gives the work a spectral quality. The boots from the 1960’s worn today by the artist contributes to this haunting temporal compression – the past in the present, an activation of memory.
This intergenerational dialogue gestures at another temporal mode – how the body keeps time through fertility. Ackroyd’s practice of self-reflexively delves into the link between creative expression and the unconscious. The development of her pieces reflect a spontaneity and freedom in the creative process, while remaining tethered to her own experiences. As the artist’s work becomes increasingly personal and vulnerable, it reflects her own individual experiences, memories and the shifting substrates of time.
This is Ackroyd’s third solo exhibition with Peres Projects and her first in our Seoul space. Ackroyd has exhibited in a number of international exhibitions including solo exhibitions The Root, curated by Paul Luckraft, at the Zabludowicz Collection, London and Underfoot, curated by Cloé Perrone, at the Fondazione Pomodoro in Milan. Group exhibitions include Masters and Servants, Ygrec Gallery, Ecole Nationale Supérieure d’Arts de Paris-Cergy (ENSAPC), Paris, cadavre exquis, Galleria Massimo, Minini, Italy, Act 1: Body en Thrall, curated by Sarah Holdaway, Rugby Art Gallery and Museum, UK and Mademoiselle, curated by Tara Londi, Centre Régional d’Art Contemporain Occitanie, Sète in France. In 2019, her work was also presented at the 15th Lyon Biennale, organized by the curatorial team of the Palais de Tokyo. Ackroyd has an upcoming solo exhibition in 2023, curated by Adam Budak at the Kestner Gesellschaft in Hanover.
Feature: Rebecca AckroydEllie Brown, NR Magazine, October 1, 2022
Rebecca Ackroyd’s first Asia solo exhibition on the passage of timeStephenie Gee, #Legend, September 13, 2022