Where's the frame
February 2, 2022 5:35 PM
As an artist, Fluidity is a vital key in Tuesday’s practice; both in methodology and conceptually. He has always been drawn towards ‘the other’ and the perception of it, its complexities and absurdities. As the artist explained in this conversation, working within and around otherness invites the political lens as well. In this conversation with Tuesday, not only do we discuss his practice, but we also talk about the most memorable moment during his study at Slade School, painting being a therapeutic medium that he enjoys, his love for music and his upcoming project.
What is the most memorable moment during your time at Slade before COVID strikes?
It's hard for me to find one particular moment but the most memorable are the QTIPOC+ seminars that I ran with Areena Ang @bellyfeena, they created such a nice community of people within the wider context of Slade that meant we had more in depth conversations about work. But even more so, it helped us to negate the isolating feeling of Slade as an institution.
Do you have any lockdown/quarantine rituals to keep you sane?
That’s painting and drawing for me, I have only began really working in these mediums since the first lockdown. When we all got collectively sent home, I began struggling with my practice, with the mediums of video, text, sound, they were too intangible and required a structure I cannot provide because I was feeling structure-less as well. So in this way painting has been therapeutic, it’s a kinaesthetic medium and I enjoy its physicality, the instantaneousness of colour on canvas or page. That I didn’t have to come with a complete narrative prepared that could be revealed as the painting came together.
Can you tell us more about your recent painting ‘MY WORLDS ON FIRE’? And what does it signify to you?
Overall, I think it’s about inaction. A ‘head in the sand’ situation. The figure has a dual role. On a personal level, that desire to scream into pillow, overwhelmed with the sheer size of the crises we face daily and as humanity. Simultaneously, on the macro level, it’s my frustration with governmental and institutional inaction, exasperating the problem. Unlike my other paintings, it is just one image/moment, we don’t know how long the figure has been in that position and as we are looking we increase that time. How long are we willing to wait? Will we wait until half the world is underwater or the forests are burnt or the fields turn to dust bowls? The title comes from the Smash Mouth lyric, it’s a bit of levity, it’s a meme but I wanted those connotations of nostalgia, especially the 2000s, cause it felt like culturally a ‘head in the sand’ decade.
You use a lot of fluidity in your work – from your brush strokes and the colour play. Can you tell us more about your creation process?
Yeah fluidity is key in my practice, both in methodology and conceptually. I want to represent spaces and objects that evoke uncertainty in their margins, that are functionally indeterminate. Where everything submerging or emerging. I work in this collage/amalgamation way, I like to introduce images as if they are fetishes or totems with specific connotations or symbolic potential. How they merge and their tension helps create a larger landscape. Additionally, especially with colour, there’s this thing with rhythm. Each colour should have a form of rhythm on canvas there is fluidity in the composition in that regard as well.
Do you ever feel like people expect your work to be culturally or even, politically engaged?
Yes, I think working within and around otherness invites the political lens. The expectation for work to be politically charged comes from the politicalisation of the black body, the queer body and those experiences that made that work. I do think of the work has political/cultural aspect though more I interested in marrying it with mythology, through mysticism and surrealism.
Do you have any favourite practicing artists you follow instagram? Name a few and spill their instagram handles!
Danielle Brathwaite-Shirley @ladydangfua who got a virtual show with New Art open now. Shadi Al-Atallah @ramenate .Abigail McGinley @abigailmcg who has just been in a fantastic show at Square Gallery. Li Hei Di @plum_black_field and Richard Ayodeji Ikhide @pandagwad
What takes you on cloud 9?
Music it the most obvious answer, but its true. I just love discovering new music and there’s no better feeling than a drop in a song that I’ve never heard before, new sounds and also just new ways that people have made music. This is probably because I work in sound, there’s a lot of joy in that but also a lot of creative investigation.
What do you treasure most in the current city you live in?
The queer community. 100%
What do you think is missing in contemporary culture?
If we are talking about contemporary British culture, there is still a need to truly address empire and colonialism. I think that as much as this past year has brought to light a lot of racial issues for some people (white people), we still cannot tackle racism in Britain without tackling the institutions that uphold it- and have benefitted from empire. For example the British museum should follow Germany’s lead and give back the Benin bronzes.
What are you currently working on? Any projects we should know of and that you can reveal?
Currently, I am working towards the degree show, for which I am making an installation with the paintings together with sounds and ceramics. I find it exciting especially because it’s work from lockdown, so it will be great to see it all together in one space. Also, I am putting out two tracks soon which I am looking forward to.