The Common Guild: Janice Kerbel, Notes from Sink / A routine for 24 women

The Common Guild: Janice Kerbel, Notes from Sink / A routine for 24 women

Following the live performance of Janice Kerbel‘s major new artwork ‘Sink’, commissioned by The Common Guild as part of Festival 2018, the Gallery is delighted to announce an extension of the project through a series of prints that further explore the language of synchronisation.

‘Sink’ is a synchronised swimming routine for 24 women, which was first presented on 3 August in the distinctive surroundings of the Western Baths, a Victorian swimming pool in Glasgow. This new series of prints provides insight into the role and process of notation that underpins much of Kerbel’s practice. Using the language of synchronisation to explore the tensions between body and language, movement and stillness, the individual and the collective, these works act as a score for and record of a performance. Kerbel treats paper as the surface of water, notating each move and arrangement with use of rubber stamps.

Kerbel regularly works with printed form to invoke real and suggested action or activities. Text-based works such as ‘Fight’ (2018), a series of silkscreen prints, graphically score an unarmed fight for a group of ten individuals, while ‘Remarkable’ (2007), a series of silkscreen prints taking 19th-century fairground posters as its inspiration, heralds the arrival of a series of imagined characters. These printed works both document and instruct action that may or may not have taken place, blurring the distinction between fact and fiction, description and premonition.

‘Sink’ is Kerbel’s largest project to date, and builds on her existent relationship with The Common Guild and Glasgow, where her work ‘DOUG’ was commissioned and first presented in the Mitchell Library in 2014. Kerbel was shortlisted for the 2015 Turner Prize for this work, which was re-configured and re-presented in the Turner Prize exhibition at Tramway.

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