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The Shock of the Now - Issue #44

Hector Campbell - Art Historian, Writer & Curator
Hector Campbell - Art Historian, Writer & Curator
Afternoon All,
I hope you’re all well and welcome to Issue 44 of The Shock of the Now.
This issue’s Featured Exhibition is Natalia González Martín’s magical exploration of Ovidian mythology ‘A change (would do you good)’ at Hannah Barry Gallery in Peckham. The exhibition is a total tour de force and I couldn’t be prouder of Natalia, who continues to impress me with her work ethic and artistic empathy. To accompany the exhibition, Hannah Barry Gallery will be releasing a publication of Natalia’s own writing, edited by the poet Rachael Jones. The selection of short stories, including personal favourites such as The Hunt, Fur and Jealousy, perfectly complement the exhibition’s exaltation of change and demonstrates a proficiency with words to rival Natalia’s painterly prowess. I encourage you all to visit the exhibition over the next two and a half weeks and to keep an eye out for upcoming announcements re: the publication.
There are also eight weekly Recommended Exhibitions and five fresh Artist Opportunities.
I hope you enjoy Issue 44, and if so do forward it along! As always any questions, comments or feedback are welcome, so feel free to get in touch.
All the best, and speak soon, H x

Featured Exhibition: Natalia González Martín - 'A change (would do you good)' Solo Exhibition - Hannah Barry Gallery
Change is afoot at Hannah Barry Gallery in Peckham, as Natalia González Martín presents the latest in a long lineage of artistic interpretations of Ovid’s magnus opus, The Metamorphoses. The lengthy Latin narrative poem, that traces a brief history of the Greco-Roman world and acts as a compendium for over two hundred and fifty myths, has previously inspired prominent artworks including Titian’s poesie series of mythological Mise-en-scènes, Velázquez’s arachnoid origin story Las Hilanderas, John William Waterhouse’s Pre-Raphaelite Echo and Narcissus and multiple Bernini marbles.
Painted on wood panels with soft washes of diluted oils, González Martín’s Ovidian maidens emerge from an amalgamation of personal preparatory photographs, stock internet imagery and art historical or religious references evident of the artist’s continued, perhaps unconscious, connection to the Catholic iconography of her upbringing. Turning her attention to the opening ten books of the immense manuscript, prior to the foundation and destruction of Troy, González Martín pays homage to the poet’s depiction of well-rounded women, both in their character and curvaceousness. Flawed, fallible and yet powerful in the face of abuses of power, these female figures subvert the stereotypes of fairytale femme fatales or demeaned damsels in distress, and stay true to the source materials’ sentimental surrealism.
Borrowing from book one, Daphne, Io and the Heliades sisters all appear at varying points in their mythological metamorphosis. We find the former, her shins scratched and scraped from fleeing Apollo’s unwanted advances, with leafy shadows silhouetted across her thighs as, post-praying to Peneus, her laurel tree transformation begins to take hold just out of frame. Elsewhere Io, the rumoured mistress of Jupiter unjustly turned into a heifer at the hands of a jealous Juno, embodies her bovine beauty, as the weeping pores of willowy poplars perform a particular ocular illusion, representative of those sorrowful sisters’ irreversible rooting after four months of unmoving mourning for their brother Phaëthon.
Nearby, the goddess Diana dries off, a curious cloud formation floating above her shoulder the only reminder of Acteon’s interruption of her afternoon bathing, an act of inadvertent voyeurism that saw the hunter become the hunted, transformed into a stag and torn to shreds by his own hungry hounds. Echo, meanwhile, endures unending unrequited love, lounging pool-side at the same spot where Narcissus, lured by the goddess of revenge Nemesis, became enamoured by his own reflection and, unable to avert his gaze, wasted away.
González Martín embraces Ovid’s myth-making as an opportunity to further understand ourselves and others, exposing our errors in an attempt to avoid their repetition. And while such tall tales talk to fundamental truths - love, lust, desire, despair, denial, envy, grief - others entertain the pre-eminent poets’ penchant for artistic allegory, commenting on or criticising the role of art and, indeed, the artist themself.
And so Arachne appears as a spider scaling the floral folds of an exquisitely embroidered cloth, the shepherd’s daughter having been perennially punished for her arrogant exclamations of artistic expertise, above even those of the goddess Athena, and subsequent outshining of the dishonoured deity in a contest of craftsmanship that saw the challenger double-down with depictions of divine defamation. Finally, two cropped corporeal compositions capture light glinting off the smooth ivory surface of Pygmalion’s sculptural companion, the figure fashioned so faithfully that the misogynist, celibate Cypriot would fondle and eventually fall in love with its supple carved curves.
Throughout, González Martín’s smaller paintings serve to assist in an artistic worldbuilding befitting of Ovid’s epic, as a supporting cast of characters and a rotating suite of symbolic props - ripe fruits, draped fabrics and blooming flowers - offer added depth to both the exhibition’s protagonists and the carefully considered expanded narrative.
González Martín’s bodies keep the score of the inevitable trials and tribulations that come from enduring their Metamorphoses reimagining, with grazed knees and the aforementioned scared shins. Furthermore, their humanity is placed at the forefront, as goddesses, nymphs and mortals alike are unable to avoid the omnipotent ageing process, succumbing to the wrinkles, grey hairs, moles and stretch marks that await us all. Imbued with relatability and grounded in reality, each subtle imperfection contrasts with their conventional flawless skin. Such empathy is again enhanced by the artist’s signature conflation of classicism and contemporary culture, as on closer inspection you begin to notice the slight skin imprints left by summer ankle socks, the immaculate manicures and perfect pedicures, the plucked eyebrows, rouged cheeks and glossed lips.
Ultimately, González Martín underlines the enduring influence of Ovid, and the lessons that can be learned from a reassessment or resurgence of myths and fables, narratives maybe overlooked or underrepresented in contemporary culture. The exhibition also encourages us to embrace change, as the sun slowly makes its way across the scenic sky of each painted panel, illuminating the individual stories before setting behind a hilly horizon. Day turns to night, ad nauseum, perhaps the most predictable yet unpreventable change of them all. Between dawn and dusk, as each principal protagonist meets their respective fate, time continues to move on around them, irregardless of any mythological main character syndrome. A reliable and reassuring reminder that at the end of the day, it’s not the end of the world.
Recommended Exhibitions Opening This Week:
Ina Gerken - ‘Poppies In Orbit’ Solo Exhibition - The Artist Room, Soho (9th June - 2nd July, opening Wednesday 8th June, 6-8pm)
The Artist Room presents Ina Gerken‘s solo exhibition 'Poppies In Orbit’. Gerken’s new paintings continue her investigation into the possibilities of abstraction. With no pre-mediated process of drawing or sketching, Gerken works intensely with acrylic paint on canvas to form balanced and harmonious yet vigorous and unpredictable compositions.
Amanda Ba - ‘The Incorrigible Giantess’ Solo Exhibition - PM/AM, Fitzrovia (9th June - 3rd July, opening Thursday 9th June, 6-9pm)
PM/AM present Amanda Ba‘s debut London solo exhibition 'The Incorrigible Giantess’, the culmination of her seven-month residence with the gallery. The exhibition continues the artist’s mystical anthropology that forms the backbone of her work, an investigation which has seen her explore our relationship with animals, hybridisation, hypersexuality and the Asian diaspora in the global West. Her new work moves focus onto female gigantism and its depiction and significance within a contemporary context.
Yulia Iosilzon - ‘Frogspawn’ Solo Exhibition - Sapling, Mayfair (10th June - 9th July, opening Thursday 9th June, 6-8pm)
Sapling presents ‘Frogspawn’, a solo exhibition of new paintings and ceramics by Yulia Iosilzon. Responding to an original short story by the curator Sonja Teszler, the artist combines inspiration from this fresh literary source with her distinctive visual vocabulary to open a portal onto a subversive fantasy world. Sapling is treating the exhibition space as a marshland, inviting the artist to populate the gallery with paintings and ceramics of her creatures emerging from the water. 
Benjamin Cosmo Westoby - ‘Brother’ Solo Exhibition - Xxijra Hii, Deptford (10th June - 10th July, opening Thursday 9th June, 6-9pm)
Xxijra Hii presents ‘Brothers’, Benjamin Cosmo Westoby‘s debut solo exhibition. Westoby presents a series of wall-based sculptures and paintings, which offer soft hues and geometric systems as a potentially infinite modular practice.
Davinia-Ann Robinson - ‘distinction between felt flesh’ Solo Exhibition - San Mei Gallery, Stockwell (10th June - 23rd July, opening Thursday 9th June, 6-8pm)
San Mei Gallery presents ‘distinction between felt flesh’, a solo exhibition and durational performance by London-based artist Davinia-Ann Robinson. Concentrating on the engagement between her body and materials, Robinson’s work explores how ‘presencing’, fugitivity and tactility can undo the colonial frameworks through which nature and bodies of colour are articulated. Over the course of the six-week exhibition, Robinson will process, clean and filter clay received from London development sites to make site-specific clay sculptures in the gallery.
Harminder Judge - ‘Rising Skin from Rock and Chin’ Solo Exhibition - The Sunday Painter, Vauxhall (10th June - 30th July, opening Thursday 9th June, 6:30-9pm)
The Sunday Painter presents ‘Rising Skin from Rock and Chin’, a solo exhibition of new works by London based artist Harminder Judge. A poem by Rosanna Puyol will accompany the exhibition.
Michaela Yearwood-Dan - ‘Let Me Hold You’ Solo Exhibition - Queercircle, North Greenwich (9th June - 8th September, opening ??)
Queercircle presents their inaugural exhibition, “Let Me Hold You” by Michaela Yearwood-Dan, featuring a new site-specific work including a curved mural installation and ceramic sculptural works. Yearwood-Dan’s work refuses the binary expectations of racial or gendered notions of collective identity and history. Resisting the clichés and strictures of representation, Yearwood-Dan presents their true self - their desires, their needs, their pain and their love - and empowers viewers to do so too; to prioritise self and collective actualisation.
Additionally, Queercircle’s reading room will serve as an additional exhibition space, hosting archive displays from artists or members of the LGBTQ+ community. The first archive exhibition, ‘The Queens’ Jubilee’, will celebrate the radical drag queens of the Gay Liberation Front, who marched through central London in 1972 for the first-ever Pride in the UK. 
Diane Chappalley - ‘The Flowers are Witness’ Solo Exhibition - Taymour Grahne Projects, Holland Park (11th June - 9th July, opening Saturday June 11th, 4-7pm)
Taymour Grahne Projects presents Diane Chappalley‘s latest solo exhibition 'The Flowers are Witness’. Chappalley uses a highly symbolic and poetic language to address personal experiences that images can sometimes describe more accurately than words. In this specific body of work, Chappalley paints a circle of inner death, rebirth and resilience to address traumatic memory.
Alongside, Taymour Grahne Projects presents Hilary Doyle‘s solo exhibition 'On the Way to the Garden’ at the gallery’s Notting Hill location, and Jung Min Park‘s solo exhibition 'Listening to the Camouflage’ at the gallery’s Artist Room space (Lonsdale Road).
Artist Opportunities:
Exeter Contemporary Open is an annual open submission exhibition, established in 2006 and hosted by Exeter Phoenix, a busy, multi-artform venue and contemporary art space situated in Exeter’s historic city centre. The exhibition aims to provide an important national platform for contemporary visual art with an emphasis on supporting emerging talent alongside more established artists. The exhibition is open to contemporary visual artists working in any media including painting, sculpture, photography, print, drawing, video, mixed and digital media. Each of the artists selected for the exhibition will be eligible for one of several cash prizes: The £1,000 Overall Award, £500 Additional Award and £200 Audience Choice Award – as voted for by visitors over the course of the exhibition. 
It’s been ten years since Gazelli Art House first launched the Window Project. From its inception in 2012, the initiative has sought to support recent art school graduates and graduate students through annual open call competitions. By offering the gallery’s prominent Dover Street façade, the Window Project has evolved into a unique and established platform for the next generation of artists and curators, developing their exposure and access to the commercial angle of the market. The Gazelli Art House Window Project call for submissions is open to MA/Postgraduate Fine Art and Curatorial Students or Graduate Students within five years of graduating. 
The Stanley Picker Gallery at Kingston University is seeking to appoint two contemporary practitioners to the Stanley Picker Fellowships in Design & Fine Art 2022. Each Fellowship provides up to £16,000 and valuable access to the extensive material workshops, technical resources and expertise within Kingston School of Art and the wider University departments, to support a practice-based, innovative research project that will result in an exhibition of international standing at the Stanley Picker Gallery.
The seventh annual Freelands Award invites expressions of interest from UK visual arts organisations for a £110,000 award to realise a forthcoming exhibition by a mid-career woman artist who may not yet have received the acclaim or public recognition that her work deserves. This award includes a fee of £30,000 for the artist, who should produce significant new work for the show. This year, Freelands Foundation has opened the application process to all visual arts organisations across the UK, including within London, who would like to apply with an exhibition they have committed to realise as part of their 2023-25 programme.
Applications are now open for the 2022 to 23 Zsuzsi Roboz Art Scholarship at Morley College London. The scholarship, which was established in 2015 in partnership with the Alfred Teddy Smith and Zsuzsi Roboz Art Trust, is a fantastic opportunity for emerging artists to develop their creative vision and skills under the guidance of staff from Morley’s School of Visual and Digital Arts. Recipients of the scholarship undertake a year of part-time, tailored study at Morley College London, with personal tutoring from professional artists throughout the year, and a public exhibition of their work at the end of the scholarship period.
The scholarship is open to artists over the age of 19, working in any 2D or 3D media to produce figurative works of art, who have already established their style and voice as an artist and want to develop their vision further.
Visions in the Nunnery is the Nunnery Gallery’s renowned showcase of moving image, digital and performance art. The biennial open call is an opportunity to be part of one of the most varied and exciting presentations of moving image in London. Each year they invite lead artists, celebrated for their innovation in the digital field, to head and inspire the exhibition programmes. This year Patrick Goddard and Emily Speed will be leading Visions 2022. Each will be exhibiting work as part of the show, and their thematic ideas will guide the selection process and set the tone for the wider exhibition. 
The Artists’ Collecting Society (ACS) is a not-for-profit Community Interest Company that administers intellectual property rights on behalf of visual artists. ACS is offering an artist the chance to win £4,500 to contribute to the cost of an artist’s studio in the UK. If you are a UK or EEA national and are an undergraduate or postgraduate university student on an accredited art course who is about to graduate, or if you have graduated from a university accredited art course within the last four years, and you work in pictures, collage, painting, sculpture, tapestry, ceramics, glassware or photography, then you are eligible to apply for the prize.
Mass Correspondence Course is an innovative distance-learning programme of online mentoring facilitated through critical, supportive written reviews by a dedicated mentor. The course is aimed at sculptors based anywhere in the world and at any stage in their career who want to develop or reinvigorate their work, whether recently graduated from art school or those without any formal arts education. 
Turps Correspondence Course is an innovative programme of online mentoring facilitated through critical, supportive written reviews delivered by a dedicated mentor. The course is aimed at painters who want to develop or reinvigorate their work, whether recently graduated from art school, mid-career or those without any formal arts education. The course is designed and structured to be delivered entirely online so that painters, based anywhere in the world and at any stage in their career, can participate and receive informed, critical feedback from a mentor who is a practising painter selected by Turps. There are 5 review points throughout the year when you will be required to upload images of your work and a short statement or ‘letter’ to your mentor. Your mentor will then review what has been uploaded and write their response. It is a very different type of feedback from more conventional face-to-face tutorials but we believe this is what makes the correspondence course such an appealing and sought after professional development course.
REVIVE and Greenwich Cultural Services are pleased to announce a grant of around € 30,000 for visual artists and creatives, for a commissioned work to be installed by June 2024.
Revive is looking for a freestanding permanent and outdoor piece to occupy and compliment the old Marie Thumas factory. The art piece will be positioned on the front terrace, having a lot of visibility to users, visitors and passers-by, while also becoming part of the identity the project. Therefore, it would be crucial to envision an artwork with a strong presence. While the main goal is to add an artistic element with values that relate to both the project and Revive as a company, the position is open to freedom.
FLAMIN Animations is a commissioning programme for early-career black-identifying artist animators living in the UK. Run by Film London and Arts Council England, the programme aims to support artist animators as they take their first steps into a career working with the moving image, with development support and funding for a new work. Launched in 2021, the inaugural round of commissions saw four new 1-3 minute animations made and showcased at London’s Picturehouse Central.
Drawing Room invites proposals that examine critical issues around contemporary drawing. They offer postgraduate students and scholars the chance to field test and peer-review research, and to network and engage with a wider community of academics and specialists. They are now inviting proposals of a high quality that reflect a strong research focus. Proposals should include a summary of your research, outline the key questions it raises and how these will be addressed by your project. Proposals must have an explicit connection to drawing, and discuss why the medium of drawing specifically has been utilised in your research. Selected papers will be presented at the next Drawing Research Forum in September 2022.
Founded by artist Anna Woodward, collector Sam Senchal and property expert Scott Franklin, Good Eye Projects will host six artists per residency at their studio spaces in Hammersmith. There are currently three residency periods scheduled, including Autumn (12th September - 4th December), Spring (6th February - 7th May) and Summer (15th May -20th). Each residency will culminate in a group exhibition. To apply, send a c. 250-word artist statement; 5 JPEG images of artworks that best represent your practice; a c. 100-word statement on how the residency will benefit you, how you plan to use it and how many days per week you’ll be able to use the studio; and relevant links to your website/Instagram to Deadline - 17th July. 
The Fringe is a celebration of the area’s art scene, bringing together artists, community groups and students. Over the course of the festival, the Fringe will take over Deptford, placing art in unexpected locations, rooted into the fabric of everyday lives. This year, Deptford X are encouraging Fringe artists to congregate their projects as close as possible to Deptford High Street, creating a hub for a vibrant range of activities for the much-anticipated return of the festival. It will extend across indoor and outdoor spaces motivated by the statement ‘We’re Here for Art’. We are also interested in Fringe projects related to gardening practices seeking to work with a community space. Deptford X is a festival for all and we particularly welcome participation by artists from black and minority ethnic backgrounds, and by artists with disabilities.
Arnis Residency is an annual residency programme for contemporary artists on a peninsula in Northern Germany, taking place from 18 September – 03 October 2022. It encourages engagement with the region’s local and remote context in order to encounter a world characterised by connections and flows beyond cities. Arnis Residency offers accommodation, food, sailing trips and swims in the Schlei for the duration of two weeks. Each resident is provided an individual room as well as a space to work in locations suitable to one’s project (a small studio space, a shed, and a sailing boat). Each applicant will have access to a travel allowance of 100€ and a small production stipend of 50€.
The East London Art Prize is an all-media art prize designed to showcase the talent of artists working and living in east London, with an accompanying event programme supporting artists’ careers and opportunities.  Proudly sponsored by Minerva, the winner receives a career-changing cash prize of £15,000 and a solo exhibition at Bow Arts’ Nunnery Gallery. The runner-up second prize is a year’s studio space with Bow Arts. 
The prize is open to any artist living or working within an ‘E’ postcode, encompassing E1-E20, SE1-SE28 and EC1-EC4. Submitting artists should hold an arts degree, equivalent arts qualification or be able to show demonstrable commitment to their artistic practice. Artist collectives/joint submissions are accepted. All media types are accepted, including (but not limited to!) painting, print, drawing, sculpture, digital, film, audio, ceramics, textiles and performance. 
Personal Projects:
I’m excited to announce that I’ve joined the selection panel for Good Eye Projects, a brand new London artist residency supporting contemporary and emerging artists.
Founded by artist Anna Woodward, collector Sam Senchal and property expert Scott Franklin, Good Eye Projects will host six artists per residency at their studio spaces in Hammersmith. There are currently three residency periods scheduled, including Autumn (12th September - 4th December), Spring (6th February - 7th May) and Summer (15th May -20th). Each residency will culminate in a group exhibition, and I look forward to providing studio visits to each residency artist.
The Open Call for Good Eye Projects’ Autumn residency period is now open! To apply, send a c. 250-word artist statement; 5 JPEG images of artworks that best represent your practice; a c. 100-word statement on how the residency will benefit you, how you plan to use it and how many days per week you’ll be able to use the studio; and relevant links to your website/Instagram to Deadline - 17th July. 
Terms and Conditions: Each artist will donate an artwork to Good Eye Projects that is representative of their practice. Only artists selected for the residency are permitted to use the studio spaces provided by Good Eye Projects. Artists are not permitted to live in their studio, and Good Eye Projects is unable to provide accommodation, cover expenses or material costs. Artists are expected to take an active role in the residency and take part in associated group activities. For the end of residency exhibition, Good Eye Projects will take a 40% sales commission and will consign the exhibited artworks for a period of three months.
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Hector Campbell - Art Historian, Writer & Curator
Hector Campbell - Art Historian, Writer & Curator

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