Gwenllian Spink is a sculptor whose interest lies in abstracting cheap, mass-produced objects through their integration with the handmade and intense artistic labour. To further this abstraction, these sculptures are often site-specific, using the space to instigate physical as well as visual interaction. Gwenllian is the current Vanguard Court Studio Award holder (2018-2019) and has recently exhibited at APT Gallery (2018), Bermondsey Project Space (2018) and Copeland Gallery (2018). Originally from Wales, she graduated from Camberwell College of Arts in 2018.
Shapeshifter II is an eleven-metre sculpture made from fake nails and salt dough, imposed with intricate mark-making. The use of the cheap, mass produced objects contrasts with the time consuming and intense artistic labour, and this conflict produces energy within my work as the two elements compete to undermine one another. The acrylic nail is an ornament that is used to beautify hands; historically long or fake fingernails can be seen as a status symbol, as it signified that the wearer did not have to perform manual labour. This contrasts with the dough that binds the surface of the sculpture together; the process of mixing and kneading this dough is a physical activity that has strong connotations of domestic labour. The integration of these materials leads to a paradoxical outcome; here you have the readymade and the handmade, the artificial and the natural, the decorative and the functional merged together in a single form.
UKYA City Takeover: Nottingham 2019