October Gallery will present the first solo show by artist LR Vandy. Following a sell-out debut at the 2018 edition of 1-54 London, the highly anticipated exhibition will feature new works by the artist, including more from her signature Hull series.
In the current Hull series, Vandy transforms model boat hulls into ‘masks’, animating them with various materials, including fishing floats, porcupine quills and acupuncture needles. The hulls allude to the transportation of migrants as commodities. As masks they present a transformation of identity, drawing upon the tradition of talismans, charms and amulets. Representing aggressive protection, the materials Vandy applies to the hulls reference witchcraft/voodoo needles or nails, creating a tension throughout the works. The overall forms draw together the opposing aesthetics of attraction and repulsion; alluring and seemingly decorative pieces that on closer inspection provoke a sense of danger in the larger context of our world.
Her new work Railway also closely examines transport systems and their hidden human costs. Vandy threads old model railway tracks across burnt wood of different depths, contained by brass borders.
Vandy continues to address the tension of opposing forms in her video work, ‘Landscapes’, in which two substances interact and mix in an extraordinary choreographic dance, forming a constantly shifting and changing visceral landscape. The act of the two materials merging, one becoming dominant, as the other becomes more hidden, encompasses many meanings for Vandy. While addressing her heritage, it also alludes to the changing of landscapes and geographies through the movement of people.
The exhibition will include the sculpture series These Women, consisting of twenty-one individual sculptures to be cast in bronze or Jesmonite each one a different variation of bold geometric elements.
A large Jesmonite sculpture from the series Superhero Cog-Woman, specially made for the exhibition will be on display in October Gallery’s courtyard. Superhero Cog-Woman is a tribute to the act of women coming together and making things happen. Each artwork from the series can be constructed from a range of cog-like components, differently configured, adding to its seemingly pragmatic and mechanical nature. Vandy’s fascination with engineering is prominent as she pushes the boundaries of traditional sculpture to create forms that have a symbiotic relationship with each component, creating figures that in sum are greater than their individual parts.