Acme, supporting artists since 1972

Acme Project Space

 

The Acme Project Space ran from June 2009 to December 2015. It provided an opportunity for those artists who are part of our Residency & Awards Programme and our International Residencies Programme with a public space within which to develop projects, show new work and engage in a critical dialogue with a wider audience.

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Andro Semeiko

‘Lily of Blythenhale’ 11.11.2011 - 11.12.2011

 
'Lily of Blythenhale' Andro Semeiko at the Acme Project Space. Photo: Acme Studios (2011)
'Lily of Blythenhale' Andro Semeiko at the Acme Project Space. Photo: Acme Studios (2011)
'Lily of Blythenhale' Andro Semeiko at the Acme Project Space. Photo: Acme Studios (2011)
'Lily of Blythenhale' Andro Semeiko at the Acme Project Space. Photo: Acme Studios (2011)
'Lily of Blythenhale' Andro Semeiko at the Acme Project Space. Photo: Acme Studios (2011)
'Lily of Blythenhale' Andro Semeiko at the Acme Project Space. Photo: Acme Studios (2011)
 
 

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Jessica Wilkes Award

Andro Semeiko’s Lily of Blythenhale tells a story about little princess Lily who finds a dragon’s tooth in the forest…; introduces noble knight Simon de Montfort, forefather of parliamentary democracy, who inherits the forest and creates a secret society called Lily of Blythenhale…; uncovers the history of a brush factory, that stood on the very spot where the current gallery is located, producing combs for an unusual ritual...

Lily of Blythenhale provides viewers with a humorous way of exploring the past as a means of analysing the present. It creates a space in which to explore our attitudes towards knowledge and power and in doing so, satirises our straightforward beliefs in achieving progress.

The exhibition is constructed as a multilayered visual story told through painting, drawing, sculpture and archival material working as props for a mise-en-scène. Each object in the show balances on the edge of being an illustration from the story, and an unconnected entity in its own right. The exhibition creates a space where the view shifts between harmonious construct and random assemblage.

As Andro explains, ‘In small theatre productions props are often reused for the next show, where they take on a new function and meaning yet still maintain elements of their previous purpose. These layers of meaning create their sense of mystery. Works in this show are constructed as reused props finding their ‘layers of dust’ from the history, legends and architecture of the gallery building and the local area.’

Marine paintings with Turneresque treatment of light refer to old sketches and maps of the East coast and the Thames. Portraits borrow poses and gestures from van Dyke’s work, while large-scale architectural paintings and drawings on the wall refer to Inigo Jones’ Paladian buildings in the capital and his decorative French railings of twisted lilies.

During the exhibition, on 3 December, an artist book will be launched and a talk will take place. The book adds another dimension to the project and is created in collaboration with Daniel Harbour cognitive scientist specialising in language, Norman Hogg artist, writer and curator, Neil Mulholland art historian and art critic, Dushko Petrovich artist and writer, Arron Sands artist, writer and curator, and Shelley von Strunckel astrologer and writer. At the book launch, a talk on chivalry/raindoba in Georgian culture and history will be given by Donald Rayfield Professor of Russian and Georgian at Queen Mary University. A Russian samovar will be laid out and Georgian tea and cakes will be served.

Andro Semeiko is the third recipient of the Jessica Wilkes Award; a major professional development opportunity established by Acme Studios and Jessica’s family and friends to celebrate the life of former Acme tenant Jessica Wilkes who died in 2006. The year-long award provides an artist with a free studio and grant to enable them to devote more of their time to their studio practice. The award, worth £10,000, is made to an artist selected from applications from current Acme studio tenants.

 
 

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