Birds and Houses ~ 4 - 27 january 2008
 
studio 1.1
london e2

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  Amanda Benson, Andy Cohen

Open Friday to Sunday, 12noon - 6pm, or by appointment.
Private view: Thursday 3rd January, 6 - 9pm.


Running simultaneously with and counter to the vogue for property make-overs Amanda Benson presents Dreamhomes that, although they have their origins in California or Nantucket, are constructed from the primitive materials to be found to hand in a Hackney artist's studio. The gap between Jackie O or Elvis' mansion and the plasticine and cardboard re-interpretations express both a grand and poignant wish-fulfillment and the basic human need for shelter common to both. The everyday materials make up delicate and beautiful structures that pique our imagination, let us re-build the lives of the rich and/or famous in our own image and with whatever means are at our disposal.

Andy Cohen produces delicate drawings that might themselves decorate these interiors, while also re-creating a corner of a real caravan, with all its authentic and exquisite paraphernalia, asking us once again: what is it that makes a home 'where the heart is'? The impulse to beautify one's domestic surroundings is basic but need not be primitive. The suite of images documenting a year in the life of that caravan tells the story of an unknowable existence that reaches back through a familiar past. Lived and yet not-lived, they form the shored fragments of the ruin of all our dreams, where aspiration escapes realisation. An examination of the unexamined life.

A feature of the show will be Cohen's pub sign 'The Breast' calling us all into the snug, an environment of warmth and comfort, be it ever so humble - there's no place...

studio 1.1

For more information or images contact:
Michael Keenan on 07952 986 696