Exhibition | Contemporary Archeology Goes Pop | Paradise Preserved | Porcelain & Pottery at 508 Gallery | London | Art Week

Contemporary Archeology Goes Pop | Paradise Preserved

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Monday, 20 September 2021 to Thursday, 30 September 2021
Monday, 20 September 2021 -
6:00pm to 8:00pm

Albany Arts Communications is delighted to announce Contemporary Archaeology Goes Pop and Paradise Preserved, the second collaboration by the Italian sculptural ceramicist AnnaLeaClelia Tunesi and British photographer Althea Wilson.

The presentation, which takes place at the 508 Gallery, London, from 20 September 2021, is comprised of a new body of work by Tunesi inspired by The British Museum’s collection of Roman and Greek pottery. Drawing on aesthetics of antiquity, the sculptures presented in the exhibition appear at first glance to be delicate artefacts that have been rescued for posterity from an archaeological dig. They are in fact beautifully constructed facsimiles not based on any particular original but forged instinctively from the artist’s imagination.

Building on their first exhibition, which took place at the Ransom Gallery in 2019, Wilson’s work depicts Tunesi’s creations within the traditions of still life paint- ing, using fruit and dried flowers to embellish themes of beauty and languid decay. Drawing on the Old Masters, these works have an atmospheric poignancy, conveying the passing of time and loss.

Tunesi’s sculptures are not thrown on a wheel, instead she uses the process of coiling, a method that has been used to shape clay for many thousands of years. The artist then ‘slashes’ with ribs into the work replicating the ravages of time. Multiple glazes of difffrent hues are then applied to further antiquate the sculptures, which are then fired. It is a haphazard process, creating beautiful accidents, with at least one in five of the works discarded.

The fragmented quality of the work is essential to the aesthetic; as Tunesi says, ‘What is missing is where the imagination begins.’ Beautifully expressive, they offer a calming meditation on rupture and dishevelment, qualities captured with poetic imagination through Wilson’s lens.

Artist ( Description ): 

About AnnaLeaClelia Tunesi

AnnaLeaClelia Tunesi (b. 1964) is an Italian ceramic artist based in London. She studied set design for theatre at the Accademia di Belle Arti di Brera in Milan and worked as an art director in television production for eighteen years, between 1987 and 2005. In 2007, she returned to her studies, completing an MA in the History and Business of Collecting Art at IESA, Paris and Warwick University, UK, and obtained her Ph.D. in Museology from the University of Leeds in 2014. She had been working in ceramics throughout these years and began to formalize her practice by beginning evening classes with potter Sarah Walton in Sussex in 2000. While undertaking her MA, she completed a three-month internship at the Stefano Bardini Museum in Florence. The fragments collection from antiquity to Renaissance art, and the eclectic nineteenth century taste of the art dealer, had a strong influence on her research surrounding shapes and their unfinished aspect. This led to an increased passion for ceramics, and in the last few years, she has decided to dedicate herself full-time to the production of her pieces. She works at In Production, Turning Earth Studio in London E10.

Tunesi’s work has been photographed by London-based fine art photographer Althea Wilson, and was exhibited in March 2018 at the Barbican Centre, London, at an event coordinated by Turning Earth.

About Althea Wilson

Althea Wilson began her career in Nigeria 1964; examples of her early paintings are held in the Nigeria National Collection of Art, as a result of sixteen exhibitions held in Lagos Art Galleries. 1967 Althea held a one man show at Gallery de Sphinx, Amsterdam, Holland, She later moved to London to design and make up antique African necklaces for Yves Saint Laurent, designed and painted window displays for Dunhill International, Rococo and other shops. She went into the antique trade then ran her own shop for fourteen years and has worked on the restoration of painted, gilded and Chinese lacquered antique furniture for the late Lord Rendlesham and Scarisbrick & Bate of Mount Street, London W1 among many antique dealers and interior decorators.

Her paintings have been exhibited in solo shows at the Richmond Galley, Cork Street, The Medici Gallery (1986 - 2001) and several London West End Galleries. Her work can be seen in private collections worldwide, including that of Baroness Fiona Thyseen-Bornemisza, as featured in Architectural Digest 200l, USA. Her hand-built ceramics were on regular display at the Medici Gallery, Grafton Street, and Steven Bartley Gallery Chelsea.

Her commissions include paintings for the Saint James Court Hotel -Taj Group- London, designs for a hand-printed wallpaper collection by Nobilis Fontain of Paris. In l992 she was awarded the internationally prestigious design commission from Shiseido Japan, then in its third year following on from Erte. Her designs to a theme of Rakuen -paradise- painted onto bone china were widely exhibited in conjunction with her paintings, most notably at Art Space, Tokyo, which led to television documentaries and interviews about her work, editorial coverage and many private commissions.

Her interior design consultants and painted mural work includes nine restaurants in London, numerous private homes in England and America. The Firmdale Hotel Group commissioned her batik hand-painted textiles for the Knightsbridge hotel, custom cloth covered portfolio entered in the Andrew Martin Designer of the Year Award and the Firmdale client Christmas gift of forty-five individually hand painted and decorated figurative sculptures. Althea Wilson acts as a consultant to several architectural designers; her involvement over a period of several months was to the armed forces Victory Club in the West End of London. One of her later commissions was to design a collection of textiles for hand block prints by Soma Blockprints Pvt. Ltd., India to be shown at the Birmingham Design Fair. U.K. Althea Wilson has exhibited her latest ceramic, bronze, hand silk screened, and batik hand painted cloth collections at Decorex 2004.

Wilson’s two books PAINTWORKS and STENCIL GENIUS, which won awards, have been best sellers, her interior design and artwork is regularly featured in leading magazines around the world.

Venue ( Address ): 

508 King's Road, Chelsea,

London SW10 0LD

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