Elaine Allison & Chris Sleath
20 May - 9 June 2023
Construct brings together two Edinburgh based artists, sculptor, Elaine Allison and printmaker, Chris Sleath. This exhibition displays both artists interest in architecture and its influence on their artwork.
Elaine Allison’s work is diverse, in terms of process, materials and subject matter. Elaine has cast and carved, constructed, folded, sewn and embroidered, using bronze, stone, wood, found objects, fabric, thread and paper. Architecture and built structures are recurring themes that are evident in her current body of work.
The gift of some laser cut sheets of metal, rescued from a skip, led Elaine to explore the delights of embossing paper, using an etching press at Edinburgh Printmakers. The embossed sheets, with their repeated, raised motifs, seemed to her to be crying out to be folded into 3D structures. The monochrome solidity of these works belies their airy lightness and the repetition of form allows for multiple configurations suggestive of figures, buildings or monoliths.
Chris Sleath’s work is largely abstracted representations of landscapes and buildings. His processes are intuitive and instantaneous and are inspired by the Japanese aesthetic of Shibui, including Yunomi and Chawan pottery, patchwork Boro textiles and modernist architecture.
The prints on display are made by off-setting oil based inks using hand rollers, relief printing using a vintage cylinder press and hand cut paper stencils (kappazuri). Sets of six monoprints share a similar colour palette, texture and size and the most recent are inspired by trips to Argyll and Bute as well as the emergence of new growth in spring and early summer.