Jude Crilly and Demelza Watts present an immersive exhibition Fever consisting of new collages, sculptures and drawing works.
The works explore alternative systems or paradigms through which to make sense of the complexity of our current moment. Today’s complex systems cannot be fully understood because they are embedded within other complex systems. Instead of falling back on simplistic narratives or conspiracy theories to explain the complexity around us, we must pivot to other ways of thinking. Collage is used by the artists as way to bypass these set logics and taxonomies that we have come to rely on.
In the works collage is approached in its most complete sense, using many materials and processes: drawing, weaving, tapestry, watercolour, text, embroidery, laser-cutting, CNC-routing, print and engraving. The works are hybrids of the hand-made and machine-made, creating personal material languages. The works mix and merge with each other—creating a ludic, open-ended, alchemical world made up of relations, and relations of relations.
Jude Crilly has created two wall-based ‘codexes’, which map connections between language, complexity and trauma. Taking inspiration from medieval medical manuscripts, animal avatars and the human nervous system, the codexes can be read as bio-psycho-social moodboards for our current moment. Where is trauma held within the complex systems of the body? How is trauma expressed outwardly by mind, affect and spirit, and how is it contained in our current culture?
Demelza Watts uses the idea of the ‘amulet’ as a starting point, as a personal, protective object which distill or contain moods, beliefs and anxieties—and as a recipe for new events. These amulets show the longing found in the switching roles from participator to observer many of use experienced during the isolation of the last year. Layering craft, gesture and recollection, Watts' works attempt to masquerade as a memento, a keepsake, a shrine even, to a lost moment.
About the artists
Jude Crilly (1982, UK/CA) lives and works in Amsterdam. Her work focus on sculpture, sound and writing. She was a resident artist at Rijksakademie van beeldende kunsten (2018–2019). She earned her MA (Sculpture) at the Royal College of Art, London, and BA (Graphic Design) from Rietveld Academie, Amsterdam.
Demelza Watts (1990, Wiltshire) is an artist who lives and works in London. Watts completed an MA (Sculpture) at the Royal College of Art, London, and a BA at Wimbledon College of Art, London. Their work uses research, found objects and experiences to examine the intersections of art, home and the everyday.
The artists met while studying at RCA London. Both artists have exhibited internationally.
This exhibition is generously supported by the Niemeijer Fonds, and the a-n Artist Bursary UK.
The artists would like to thank Matteo Casarin, Monique de Wilt and Floris Schönfeld.
Photo documentation by Ilya Rabinovich.