Paper #15 - Unstable Ground

Featuring new work from a number of artists who explore memory within their work, including Turner Prize nominee George Shaw.

By Lee Isherwood | 28 July 2014

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Unstable Ground considers how drawing methods are related to experiences of autobiographical memory. The exhibition features new work from a number of artists who explore memory within their work, including Turner Prize nominee, George Shaw, Laura Oldfield Ford, who was recently included in Ruin Lust at Tate Britain, and Comics Unmasked at the British Library, Lisa Wilkens who exhibited in Paper at Saatchi Gallery.

George Shaw – Black Magic, Stone Lithograph on Paper, 2014

Unstable Ground is a group show that explores the perplexing, the fragile, the experiential, and the direct relationship between the paper surface and the representation and manifestation of memory. Focussing on the autobiographical memory of each artist, their works create an emotional dialogue between place, drawing methods, and the mediation between vision, hand, and brain.

The artists presented in Unstable Ground offer insights and glimpses into these important, discursive processes. They each have a relationship with the concept of Unstable Ground in a variety of ways, from Stephen Walter and Laura Oldfield Ford’s urban mappings, revealing the hidden and complex political and poetic narratives of human life, to Annabel Dover and Lisa Wilkens’s ‘drawn out’ relationship with the memories of personal objects and places. This is revealed in the works on many levels. The image that is immediately presented in all these works is the first of many layers. Unstable Ground attempts to dig deeper, present and open up a dialogue with seams of artistic, social and political signifiers.

Virtual Memory Walks

As part of the process of creating this exhibition, Woollham undertook a virtual memory walk with each artist. Using Google Earth and Skype, and starting at the home where the artist grew up, Woolham journeyed through time and space, guided by the memories that are drawn out and unfold. This online experience, utilised as a curatorial tool with the artists and presented as a series of videos, is an integral part of the presentation of the exhibition, unravelling and laying bare the autobiographical and artistic details around why these artists are working in a particular way. The process of the walk captures how these artists might dialogue and use memory as a catalyst for their work.


Reece Jones – Gaia, Charcoal & Polymer Varnish on Paper, 2014

2 August – 13 September
Paper Gallery
Mirabel Street