Thursday, 3 March 2016

I'm not sure if I ever posted about this or not, just before moving from London to Margate a friend of mine, Martino asked me to be in his fantastic exhibition. I may be bias, but as it was one of my favourite shows of recent years I'm happy to remember it.
Martino Gamper: design is a state of mind brought together a group of Martino's friends & colleagues, old and new. Asked to submit items from a personal collection, items that inspire and drive them. Displayed on a menagerie of classic shelving systems; every one a design classic or from Martino's own collection, old and new.
I loaned pieces from my workshop/studio, which was rather hard as most of my possessions were already boxed up ready for my move from the city. The 11 items above were intended to be representative of my interests and thoughts at the time. The exhibition was very successful and toured around Europe, well over a year later a box was returned to me. For sometime I didn't want to open the box and some of the items still remain unpacked today. I think this is in an ongoing effort to avoid becoming a hoarder by trying to detach myself from material goods. I would like to be able to learn from objects, handle them, work out how things are made but without the need to keep them for ever, I want to be able to learn without having to own. Most of my collections are picked up because other people don't want them anymore, in skips, car boots, on the street, I collect mostly unwanted worthless junk, sometimes items become valuable, others waste away. Sometimes I assemble collections and pass them on to others as if my work is done. The goal has always been to collect with purpose, this is why I make a point of regularly rotating collections and keeping my habits in check. But I want to make sure that at the end of my time on this earth, my life of collecting isn't left behind on the floor at the end of a flea market, I would rather not own anything now. Perhaps I enjoyed this exhibition so much because I could see into the minds of many of my respected peers, learning from these objects, habits and how these item's relate to artist's and designer's practices without having to own all these things myself, passing through the mind can sometimes be better than passing through the hands. Is collecting a disease?
above: unknown origin object of mine in the show, photo by Ally Capellino
1. Oak tree effect ridged foam cooler bought in Belgium as a child
2. Render fragment with mosaic tiles, shopfront in New Cross
3. African handmade figure found in a shed
4. Marble object with phoney story from a car boot sale
5. Concrete/Paint fragment saved from the demolition of CSM graphic design, Long Acre
6. Marble container, pre waterjet
7. Clock, powder coated pressed steel and clock movement, Romford car boot
8. Unknown wooden object from house clearance, Brick Lane
9. Metal framed cube, shop closure, Deptford
10. Unknown perspex/threaded object, Des, Brick Lane
11. Deed box of 1920s cast aluminium workshop salesman's planning samples

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