Phoebe Davies · MJ Harper · Adama Jalloh · Beth Kettel · Abondance Matanda · Olivia Norris ·
Olu Ogunnaike · Ruth Sutoyé · Rosa Johan Uddoh · CBT (Tamar Clarke-Brown & Isaac Kariuki)
Muscular Notions assembles eleven multidisciplinary artists probing intimate movement within public spheres as a means of communication, claiming space and reaffirming communities. Small-scale physical phrases and gestures of articulation, in both support and in excess of language, are highlighted for their ability to transform, translate and transfer energy and meaning.
In their thought and physical production, these artists exercise themselves and their approaches as mechanical bodies. They assume the role of speaker and subject, obstacle and observer with profoundly nuanced outcomes: a balcony railing is claimed as a ballet barre for a physical thinking-out-loud; a charcoal-dust screenprint is simultaneously rendered and deteriorated.
The skeletal framework of the artist's own body and other bodies in motion are modified to fit the structural framework of their platforms of description and display. The screen, the performance, the object, charged as witnesses, become both mirrors and intimate partners with whom to rehearse, re-enact and re-inscribe.
The exhibiting artists embrace the inherent messiness and abundant slippages that inevitably arise as different modes of verbal and nonverbal languages are traversed. They reach beyond merely acknowledging their 'working out'; actively repurposing transformed elements as the bones from which to form the future iterations of their practice and process. Accordingly, Muscular Notions is drenched in a supple, working energy, within which movement-lead artistic production can continually be readdressed and reworked.