Dependent Rational Animals is a collaboration between Roxy Walsh and Sally Underwood that explores ways in which Sculpture and Painting can inter-relate. In the work, large wall paintings provide ‘scapes’ for large architectural sculptures, which in turn provide spaces for paintings. The collaborative process is one of call and response, like music for two choirs, where works respond to and echo each other.
Walsh and Underwood first met at Braziers International Artists’ Workshop in 2006 and became increasingly interested in assonances between the imagery, content and structure of their respective works: hermetic spaces, gestures of protection, shifting scale, the circulation of internal and external, and bodily apprehensions of space. The collaboration has been developed (between London and Berlin) as a series of public and private blogs: http://dependentrationalanimals.blogspot.co.uk/.
Two solo exhibitions in 2012 - IGLOO at Globe Gallery in Newcastle and in Northampton (funded by ACE as part of the Fishmarket At… Programme) - allowed the ideas to be more fully tested through the production of a single architectural sculpture for two very dissimilar spaces.
The 230 square metre space at Towner has allowed for a much fuller exploration of the internal/external relationships, incorporating an new tower sculpture (6 metres across and 3 metres high), and larger scale wall paintings that build on research undertaken by Walsh in 2000 (Site specific painting in England and Italy; AHRC / Abbey Fellowship / British School at Rome).
A full colour catalogue will be produced (ISBN to come) with a text by Anne Enright in July / August 2013. This relationship to fiction, which was further explored through the public engagement programme, builds on research undertaken in 2003 – 5 on relationships between fiction and contemporary Art (RW: Infallible, In Search of the Real George Eliot Arts Council / AHRC ).