Where's the frame
November 23, 2020 6:30 PM
Peter Spanjer is a London based Bremen born Nigerian artist. His work is often framed around the idea of resistance; resisting the emotional stereotypes put on black men; resisting the need to perform his blackness to others and allowing room for self exploration which he extends to an audience as a piece of visual art. The artist graduated in 2020 from MA in Contemporary Art Practice: Moving Image at the RCA and his solo The Tingle That You Feel on Your Tongue at Kristin Hjellegjerde Gallery’s London Bridge space is scheduled to open next week.
The exhibition will include the moving images Every Piece of You and Make Me Safe. Emotionally-charged shots conveying sensuality, sexuality, softness and vulnerability, combined with jarring music and spoken word, Peter Spanjer’s work is very gripping. Both moving images were created in 2020 in response to the resurgence of the Black Lives Movement. About Make Me Safe, the artist has written:
'It is a reaction to the current racial pandemic targeting black people.
It is a reaction to knowing that safety is seldom.
It is a reaction to the realisation that whilst we swim to safety, we have to keep faith, whatever that means to you.
So it is also about light and softness and colour.
It is about protection and home, whoever or wherever that is for you.'
His practice is like a collage, gradually layering sound, image and text to build a rich sense of depth. Sometimes the shots are an assemblage of different moving fragments at the same time. He typically begins with the sounds, either creating them himself or weaving together fragments from other sources.
The exhibition’s title, The Tingle That You Feel on Your Tongue refers to the sensory side of the featured works. The artist explained that a tingle ‘is a feeling that cannot be replicated or even necessarily explained’ and like any sensation, it has the power to trigger memories and transport us psychologically to a specific moment in time. Both Every Piece of You and Make Me Safe possess a vivid urgency that speaks to the current racial crisis, but also to widespread issues around expression, anxiety, and self.
Image courtesy of the artist.