On Saturday 9th July 2016, 6-9pm, Instigate Arts takes over the main gallery space at HOME
in Manchester to host our ‘Ambition’
pop-up exhibition. In this series of Q&A’s we get a little more insight into what makes some some of the participating artists tick. Here we speak with artist, dancer and writer Stef Elrick:
Can you tell us about your practice?
I’m a dancer and performance artist who also dabbles in theatre and fiction writing. I love all forms of expression (although I’m terrible at fine art!!) I love embodying concepts in my work, creating visercal experiences that aim to push myself, and my audience, into new patterns of thinking. If I’m learning something new about myself I’m almost certain the audience will be learning something too.
How does your work relate to the themes of Ambition?
compenSATE looks at the way we consciously and subconsciously compete with each through the way we look. Beautification rituals are often designed to make us stand out or attract the attention of others, but they more often than not remove us from our true beauty. Our dance piece will look at the way we aspire to better ourselves through body modification, in all its subtle forms, but generally make ourselves look unnatural and homogenised by doing so.
Do you think the themes of Ambition relate to the current political and social climate?
Most definitely, I think over-indulging in ambition makes people lose focus of what’s actually important in life and often leads to arrogance and a distorted perspective. I think ambition can be healthy at times, in the early stages of a project for instance, but in terms of sustained human and social relationships it is very rarely channeled healthily. Ambition often leads to self-centeredness and that in itself leads to lack of empathy and detachment.
How important is the role of artists’, and the art world, in shaping both people’s lives, and the social and political landscape?
Art is intrinsic to the social and political landscape because it raises questions that are often too difficult or complex or seemingly trivial to discuss elsewhere. Art exists in an ideological bubble but inside that bubble all kinds of imaginative leaps can be taken. It provides a space for us to look our darkest fears or highest ideals straight in the eye, acknowledging them as our past drives or future desires depending on our personal perspective.
For more information about Stef Elrick click here and also @stef_terrierist
See Stef’s work alongside other participating artists at our Ambition pop-up exhibition
Saturday 9th July 2016, 6-9pm
HOME, 2 Tony Wilson Place, Manchester, M15 4FN
This is a free event and everyone is welcome.