Camden Arts Centre
26 July — 29 September 2013

Emma Hart worked at Wysing as part of The Forest residency in autumn 2012.  She developed an entirely new series of works included in her solo exhibition, Dirty Looks, at Camden Arts Centre.

Emma Hart: Dirty Looks

Whilst at Wysing on The Forest residency, Hart spent time making new works in our ceramics studio.  Dirty Looks consists of a series of these new sculptural works combining photography, video and ceramics.

Rejecting the contemplative environment of the gallery space, Hart makes work that captures the confusion, stress and nausea of everyday experience. Central to this is a determined frustration in the boundaries and restrictions of photography; ‘The camera is not our second set of eyes… they see what they want to see’, she says. For Hart, there is a divide between the overwhelming chaos of reality and the way visual culture smoothes it out. Through sculpture, she corrupts digital photographs and spatially infects videos, ‘dirtying’ the images.

Hart’s practice often draws on her own embarrassment. Reflecting on her experience of working in a call centre in her early twenties, Dirty Looks choreographs a cacophony of noise, imagery and objects. Chipboard plinths with ceramic lopsided drawers, DIY office supplies and a homemade water cooler litter the space. Discomfort manifests itself in crudely made ceramic tongues, pulling open doors, escaping from furniture. This unexpected meshing of materials results in work that is raw, detailed and fractured.

Emma Hart has presented solo exhibitions and performances at galleries including Cell Project Space, Stanley Picker Gallery and Modern Art Oxford. Her practice is a course of imaginative action for domestic technology, manifesting in videos, sculptures and performances. She is currently researching for her PhD at Kingston University. In 2011 Hart presented TO DO, a critically acclaimed solo show at Matt’s Gallery, where she is represented. In 2012 her first in the series of Monuments to the Unsaved was exhibited when she was nominated for the Jerwood Foundation / Film and Video Umbrella awards.She also developed a new commission for the Whitstable Biennale 2012.