Beast In A Dangerous Landscape
6 – 27 October 2012
Opening Saturday 6 October at 14:00
Exhibition poster available. Please scroll down for Download or collect printed version from the gallery
Bonita Alice’s exhibition Beast In A Dangerous Landscape opening on 6 October 2012 at GALLERY AOP, is the second in a series of exhibitions, and follows on her Beast At Home show in March 2010. It consists of drawings in dyed wool ‘dust’ on paper, predominantly circular in format (tondos), These tondos are often grouped together in series of six, nine, twelve, sixteen or twenty, each series constituting an intra-dependent work. These are complemented by works of acrylic on paper and a number of water colours. The exhibition is accompanied by an exhibition poster with a short essay by Alice.
Previously Alice focused on such concerns as place, geography, history, memory, and the transience of all things. In her earlier work there is a sense of a very private, inner journey; a profoundly personal exploration of what it means in terms of lived, human experience, to migrate geographically from the familiar to the strange. In her most recent work, however, Alice’s interests have shifted to include the study of animal-human relations and related ideas. She quotes from Kalpana Rahita Seshadri’s book with a most telling title, HumAnimal and goes on to say in her own essay that “ …in our relationship with the non-human animals who inhabit the landscape with us we’ve never advanced very far in terms of reconciliation but have refined and perfected their oppression as if seeking proof of what we regard as our superior position.”
“Beast”, Alice continues, “is the spectre of this most ambivalent of relationships [between human and animal]. Beast is my image of internal noise played out as external disturbance. It plays out the dramas that follow when private crises that lie unattended leak out and are exposed in shared turmoil. The landscape that surrounds Beat both suffers and causes the effects of its crisis. Projecting the internal unto the external landscape is something individuals do. I suspect though that there’s a parallel that occurs on a grand scale with peoples and nations. It is a theme common, for instance, in Japanese Art and belief, that destructive events in nature are linked to the unresolved emotional dynamics of individuals and peoples. Hokusai’s Wave, we know, is not just water.”
Bonita Alice was born in Johannesburg, South Africa in 1962. She completed a BA Fine Art Degree at the University of the Witwatersrand and received a MFA from the Michaelis School of Fine Arts at the University of Cape Town, South Africa in1990. She relocated to London in 2007. Her recent interests include the study of animal-human relations and related ideas in the context of environmental discourse as well as in relation to her own Art practice. Beast In A Dangerous Landscape is Bonita Alice’s third solo exhibition at GALLERY AOP.