Michael Earll, Simon McAuley, Catriona Thomson and Gary Turner.
Throughout 2010, Project Ability residency artists were provided with time, space and facilities in which to concentrate on the development of their artistic practice in a supportive environment and given the opportunity to devise new projects and to experiment with their individual practices. The opportunity for individual research, experimentation and development is further encouraged through interaction and discussion between the residency artists and devised through this collaborative exhibition.
Project Ability’s first resident artist was Simon McAuley. McAuley graduated from Glasgow School of Art Photography in 1997 and has since developed a distinctive practice mainly working in photography, text and video. More recently, McAuley has had a particular focus on drawing and during the residency produced a series of intensively worked drawings by applying intricate mark-making methods, compiling a series of complex works on paper. His detailed works are constructed from thousands of hand drawn marks creating monochrome sequences of kaleidoscopic lines.
June resident, Catriona Thomson has a background in stitched textiles and fashion design and has developed her multifaceted practice through different techniques to explore various influences and periods in her life. A stylised process of editing encompassing her interests, taste in music, family and idols, drawing and collage has emerged creating a map of her experiences and influences including the work of Andy Warhol and Peter Blake. Thomson has a particular focus on making a finished piece of work from many sporadic ideas and material; working with images and objects from everyday life and popular culture, she makes photographs and working from these, creates her whimsical scenes.
The artist for the month of July was Michael Earll, a young Create participant, painter and filmmaker. Earll spent a focused month creating bold colourful paintings, inspired by his music heroes: painting images from bands, musicians and gigs with Pink Floyd, The Flaming Lips and Oasis subject to his transformations. The atmosphere, emotion and excitement of watching live bands is what has driven Earll’s practice throughout his residency and he states that the finished work is as much about music as it is about image making. Popular scenes from iconic bands become transformed with colliding energetic fluorescents mixed with darker palettes reminiscent of the clash of stage lights and murk you would experience at a gig.
In August, resident Gary Turner commenced his fake fur theatre by making a series of large masks inspired by manga animation and comic books. Turner has made an entire collection, each with a persona of their own and documented in numerous ventures in and around Trongate103. Using the mask as a feature of cloaked performance and storytelling he directs his humorous and gauche characters in a collective surreal documentary featuring the escapades of the likes of Patch and Goof Woof. Turner’s characters playfully act upon pretence, child’s play and the appeal of masks; the power of anonymity and mystery they claim on both their wearer and audience.