Moves: Darren Harvey-Regan, Jonathan Murphy, Tom Owen, Amy Petra Woodward
This project takes as its starting point a photograph of Leo Tolstoy playing chess with his son-in-law M. Sukhotin in 1908.
Focusing in on the chessboard’s gridded composition, a number of black and white squares are visible. They appear delimiting - acting as flattened, ordered resting places for each game piece, before and after a movement. In contrast, the shapes of the pieces’ movements are varied as they cut across the board and leave a square behind: if one could imagine a blur created as the pieces moved diagonally or in an L-shape throughout the game, a composition would emerge that is both based upon and contradicted by a grid. The grid holds, but also releases the pieces so they can advance. A grid, all in a blur: forming and formless.
The display presents a series of works that contain a grid structure either intact or disassembled. In different ways, the works show how, as the perpendicular array of lines which form a grid dissolve or misshape, a space is created conceptually that might either resist or reveal a story or narrative. The photograph acts as a point of comparison for these ideas as they are expanded and find life within the other works on display.
Curated by Daniel C. Blight. A short essay by the curator accompanies the artists works.