Giovanna Iorio‘s Small House Gallery VOICE PORTRAITS exhibition is a sensual, intellectual and cultural treat. The colourfully modified, strangely meditative spectrograms that Iorio creates allow us to ‘listen with our eyes’ to corresponding poetry readings by their original authors in their mother tongue. Italian, Irish, English, French, Scottish, Welsh, Russian, Norwegian and Canadian poets are represented, the living and the dearly departed — some with big household names and others lesser known. The show is a trip around the world, through time, and in the imagination. Iorio’s artistically interpreted spectrograms of voice recordings are selected from the Poetry Sound Library, a multi lingual, archival, interactive global map of poetry recordings that the Italian Iorio co-founded with her British husband.
Edori Fertig‘s MEDIATIONS ON BLUE is a mini exhibition of small sqare paintings Fertig made during the third Covid lockdown while sheltering in place at home in South London, looking at the same objects near the same window that looks out over the same scenery every day, and turning it into a present moment meditative practice. What began as a teaching exercise with her art students on zoom, became a daily practice that involved ‘painting with blues to combat the blues’ and it evolved into the series on show with us now – her small paintings becoming wonderfully monumental in scale inside Small House Gallery.
Jenny Nash‘s TWO FEET IN THE WARDROBE show occupies the ground floor of SMALL HOUSE TWO. This series of 8 x personal photographs they share with us were taken in the house they grew up in, and utilises the techniques of AutoPathography, or SoloPhototherapy; the former is a methodology they developed from the work of photographic artist Dr. Spencer Rowell, and the latter is influenced by Rosy Martin and Jo Spence’s 1980s co-development of phototherapy. Nash’s experiments with different methods of deconstruction and reconstruction of self portraits attempt to draw content from the unconscious to make it conscious, and then to use them as research into photographic abstract expressionism (initially brought about, not by painters, they contend, but by photographers). Nash was drawn to showing this work in the context of a dolls house because of the tangible link to childhood memory, and also the novelty, saying, “I’ve shown in a lot of galleries but never a miniature one!” Nash is a documentary and protest photographer, predominantly focused on LGBTQ+ issues & antiracism work. This enigmatic art-photographer’s instagram account is well worth a look: @sullenriotphotography.
SMALL HOUSE TWO is also hosting a very spontaneous group show on its top floor (attic space) thanks to an informal and impromptu conversation very recently between our curator Eldi Dundee and a South London Women Artists member Edori Fertig. Eldi, via instagram, invited Edori to show a particular body of work in the Small House Galleries (Meditations On Blue), and was given the added bonus of a group show by three members of THE SKIP SISTERS who have worked in miniature: Edori, a founding member, who made the miniature museums in blister packs for gum and lozenges, Liz who works in the costume department of a famous theatre, and who made the toy/pin cushion hybrid we’re showing, and Julia, who painted the tiny dioramas in jewellery boxes, sardine tins, and watch fobs. The group has been going since 2006, their aim being to rescue discarded materials and objects from the fate of landfill, and having lovingly hoarded them for years, to restore, repurpose, and upcycle them into new and desirable objects again, from the useful to the whimsically decorative. They are a group of five who, among other things, make sculptural objects, clocks, jewellery, textiles and more. Their collective creativity knows no bounds. They are: Julia Burnett, Edori Fertig, Liz Honeybone, Pia Randall-Goddard and Helen Turner. (We are showing selected work from the FIRST THREE at this time, but we’re pleased to confirm that a full house takeover is in the pipeline with ALL FIVE Skip Sisters a little later in the year.)
I think artists are actually natural collectors and hoarders — maybe less so now, in the digital era — but you’re drawn to objects all the time and you see treasures that people will overlook.Edori Fertig
(Founding member, The Skip Sisters, Est. 2006)
CAPTAIN VIOLET VINTAGE‘s Springtime Jewellery Edit is now in SMALL HOUSE TWO on the first floor. There are also a couple of pieces in the curator’s office in the basement annex. There is a considerable collection of enamelled metal flower brooches and earrings from the 60s, a few quirky animal brooches from the 70s (some are older), and one or two Valentines related items, literally in the windows, hanging out over the exterior of the house. All are for sale and some can be found at Captain Violet’s Etsy shop and/or their instagram @captainvioletvintage. Contact them if you see something you like and it’s not listed – they will create a custom listing for you (unless the piece has already sold).
CAPTAIN VIOLET VINTAGE‘s royal commemorative tea and sweets tins have taken over SMALL HOUSE COTTAGE since mid January 2021. Young Queen Elizabeth II’s 1953 coronation feature highly, as do King George V’s 1935 Silver Jubilee, and there’s even one from the reign of Edward VII. They look rather charming in the context of the designer pimped & restored vintage handmade fleamarket rescue! Some tins have been sold since, but there are still some beauties left which are listed online at Captain Violet’s Etsy shop.
Are you an artist?
Interested in showing your smallest works in our Small House Galleries? Send us your proposal. See our rolling Open Call or go to Curator Space to apply. You can also find us on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook to get in touch.