Full name: Hermione Allsopp
Organisation: Folkestone Fringe
Currently lives and works in: St Leonards on Sea, UK
Areas of interest: Sculpture, installation, display, everyday life, objects
Favorite books: Part Object Part Sculpture by Helen Molesworth, Lacuna by Barbara Kingslover, High-rise and The Crystal World by J G Balard, All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr.
I make sculptural work by collecting objects and furniture and re-creating them into new forms or compositions. These are familiar, known, domestic items that have been discarded in charity or junk shops – not, inert materials, but ones that carry collective attachments, memories and meanings. As sculpture, these re-done, or un-done-up objects begin to exist as something else and raise questions about the value and material nature of everyday objects. Through the choice of objects, and the techniques I employ, I intend to explore the boundary between repulsion and attraction, ideas of taste and notions of desire. I also reflect on wider topics related to consumerism and psychological and physical interiors and exteriors.
What inspires you as an artist?
The objects from everyday life. The world around me. Political situations. Natural structure, the processes of making and unmaking.
What do you think is the purpose of art?
There are all sorts of things that art can be, but for me I want to raise questions and make people think about things in different ways.
Why are you a part of MagiC Carpets?
I was invited by Georgie Scott, the curator at Folkestone Fringe, to be part of MagiC Carpets. MagiC Carpets provided a unique and exciting funded opportunity which enabled me to work abroad, engage with new communities, meet people and expand my practice as an artist.
MagiC Carpets project: “Organic Matters”
My project was part of a residency in Guimarães (Portugal), where I and another sculptor Ida Blazicko met with a community of women who wash in the outdoor tanques lavadoros in the town. The project evolved through an organic process of work, and research made during the residency and through an engagement with this community and the territory and tradition of Guimaraes.
My final installation was a work consisting of 18 sculptural spheres made from old clothes and cement and five large photographic images taken at the tanques, printed on cloth. The project was realised at Casa Da Memoria, a museum of memory, and was exhibited as part of the CONTEXTILE2018 exhibition.
My working practice as an artist is located in an exploration of materials and concepts that often develop through a process of making and unmaking. I typically use objects and materials that have been pre-loved or used and therefore carry collective social meaning or memory.
Here making with clothes and cement reflected the act of washing. The physical structure of these textiles, mirrors the interweaving threads of communication in the historic custom of communal washing and the everyday matters that arise.
The spherical sculptures also refer to the cycle and labour of washing, which references both daily routine and wider environment life cycles.
Past projects Hermione Allsopp is proud of
2017 Gross Domestic Product, Unit One Gallery/ Workshop, London
Exhibition alongside One Star House Party
2017 Highly Sprung, 21 Guildhall St, Folkestone
Exhibition in an empty ex-charity shop as part of the Folkestone Fringe, Folkestone Triennial
2017 Off Cut, Art SpaceTrinity7, Hastings
Define Gravity, Sculpture in the Ahmanson Collection, Ahmanson Gallery, Irvine, California, USA oct 2017 until 28thFeb 2018
Another Kind of Light, ParticipatoryCommissionfor Towner Gallery, Eastbourne and Arts Council Collection. Jan-July 2017
Installation/ sculptures/ solo exhibition
I spent a week working in a disused charity shop which had previously sold second-hand furniture in Folkestone, UK. Here I created new work out of furniture and exhibited some pre-existing works.