An assistant is a person (or by extension a device) that helps another person accomplish their goals

Bearspace in association with Peer Sessions, presents an exhibition project entitled The Assistant. From 14th-29th May and 4th-19th June exhibitions will pair up an emerging artist, who will create the artwork, with an established artist who will instruct them. The established artist will send the emerging artist, or assistant, a list of rules one month prior to the exhibition opening, rules which will detail how the established artist wishes the work to be created and/or installed. This blog contains updates on their progress whilst a parallel page collects discussions around the idea of being an assistant and stories shared by other 'assistants' across the arts.

Monday, 22 March 2010

Artists Announced!

The Artists have been confirmed for the forthcoming exhibition at Bearspace, Deptford the Assistant. The exhibition will open in May but is being documented here in the run up to the show, examining the process of negotiation that goes into its production. It will explore the relationship of those artists designated 'Assistant' to the sets of instructions that they receive from their more established colleagues.

The artists have been confirmed as follows:

Artists Creating Work

Emerging Artist 1:

Kate Pickering

Kate Pickering is a London based artist and recently completed her MFA in Fine Art at Goldsmiths College. Recent exhibitions include WORDS at Am Nuden Da and The Devil’s Necktie at Woodmill studios, and has a forthcoming solo exhibition at Bloc space in Sheffield. Her work addresses the beliefs and disbelief she encounters within the ‘post-ideological’ world of contemporary art. Her interest is in how the language of religion might be confused with the language of art in order to both examine and undo art world norms and assumptions. Texts appropriated from various religious sources are projected or performed, in order to mesmerise or confront the viewer.

Emerging Artist 2:

Blue Curry

Blue Curry was born in Nassau, the Bahamas. He trained as a photographer at the University of Westminster before completing his MFA at Goldsmiths in 2009. He currently lives and works in London. His exhibitions include works at Art Basel, Miami, Poortgebouw, Rotterdam, the National Art Gallery of the Bahamas and Photographers' Gallery, London, he has work in the collections of the National Art Gallery of the Bahamas and in private collections in the UK, America and the Caribbean. His works mainly fall into the category of installation.

Artists Setting Instructions

Established Artist 1:

Maria Fusco


Maria Fusco is a writer, editor and academic based in London. Born in Belfast, she contributes to a broad range of international publications, is Director of Art Writing at Goldsmiths, University of London, and is the founder/editor of “The Happy Hypocrite”, a journal for and about experimental art writing. In 2009 she was the Critic-in-Residence at Kadist Art Foundation, Paris and in 2009-10 the inaugural Writer-in-Residence at Whitechapel Gallery, London. A book of her short stories published by Sternberg Press is forthcoming later in 2010.

'Maria is creating a vanguard in the relationship between language and
 visual arts that is undoubtedly of significance, and suffused with
 humour, absurdity and a serious playfulness.' - Kit Hammonds, freelance
 curator and tutor, Curating Department, Royal College of Art, London.

Established Artist 2:

Gordon Cheung

Gordon Cheung is of Hong Kong origin and born in London 1975 where he lives and works. Cheung’s multi-media art capture the hallucinations between the virtual and actual realities of a globalised world oscillating between Utopia and Dystopia. Spray paint, oil, acrylic, pastels, stock listings and ink collide in his works to form epic techno-sublime vistas. He exhibits internationally and was in the largest and most ambitious survey of recent developments in art from the UK; The British Art Show 6 and The John Moores Painting 24. He was commissioned for a Laing Art Solo Award (Selected by Susan May) July 2007. 2009 solo shows include 'The Promised Land', Jack Shainman Gallery, New York, 'Art in the Age of Anxiety' Volta NYC, New York and 'The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse', The New Art Gallery Walsall UK. Forthcoming is Cheung's first US solo museum exhibition at the Arizona State University Art Museum in 2010.

Cheung's works are in international collections including the Hirshhorn Museum, Whitworth Museum, ASU Art Museum, The New Art Gallery Walsall, Hiscox Collection, Progressive Arts Collection, UBS Collection and the Gottesman Collection.

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