Anthi is from Paphos, Cyprus and she has just completed the MA Visual Arts: Fine Art Digital Course at Camberwell from which she will graduate with a distinction. Once the excitement of the Summer Show died down we interviewed Anthi, asking about her practice, her time at Camberwell and what’s next for her.
Anthi is half of the team at RAUM Gallery, Peckham Road, Camberwell. RAUM Gallery is an artist run project space that collaborates with students and emerging artists to provide an area of exchange inside the realms of the University of the Art environment. So far Anthi and Donald Takeshita-Guy have managed to host several exhibitions, achieving its goal of creating dialogue between students from different colleges across UAL. For this initiation Anthi and Donald were both awarded the inaugural Liberalis Award in recognition of their contribution to the wider university community life.
During her first year of the MA at Camberwell Anthi, along with her colleagues, were part of the curating team of the Lumen Prize Exhibition, at the Crypt Gallery, Saint Pancras Church, London. In 2015 Anthi along with Huijun Guan curated the Digital Meze Exhibition at Gitton Gallery in Bethnal Green, London.
Please tell us a bit about your background and how you came to study at Camberwell?
I began my studies at Kingston University pursuing a BA Fine Art degree, which I was awarded a distinction in. I always wanted to become part of the wider community of UAL, the fact that there are so many colleges was something that was really exciting. Camberwell was my first choice due to the fact that it is a smaller college, thus, I had the opportunity to familiarise myself with the resources and facilities, and soon enough feel part of Camberwell’s family.
Can you please describe your art practice:
My keen interest lies in the human-object interaction and the idea that an object can be transformed into a being by removing its initial function, and by collaborating with it in an attempt to create a brand new outcome. Through unusual body postures and movements I intentionally hide my face and parts of my body from the camera lens in an attempt to hide my identity, transforming my body into a new surreal object that is no longer reminiscent of the human body. By interacting and cooperating (through performance) with the objects I collect or create, new sculptural compositions are made. These composition take action only in a specific period of time, the performances vary in duration, from 2 minutes to 10 minutes long. These performance sculptures are changing every minute, either deliberately or depending on my physical restrictions. As soon as my body cannot handle the weight any more the sculptural composition lets go and the whole composition falls apart. The sculptures are preserved in time only through their documentation, either by the use of photography or video.
What are you currently working on?
After graduating from the MA, I would like to continue working on my sculptural composition exploring and experimenting by integrating the use of different materials and methods that I haven’t yet experimented with. Furthermore I would like to gain a more in depth knowledge in the science of Morphology (in relation to objects, shapes and form).
If possible, I would really like to provide guidance and help to the new coordinators of the RAUM Gallery at Camberwell. In the meantime I’m trying to find a part time internship in the creative industry.
How has studying at Camberwell informed or influenced your art practice?
Studying at Camberwell was an outstanding experience. Due to the fact that our course had quite a small number of people, the group discussions, critiques, and conversations regarding our practice occurred quite often. Our course leader, Jonathan Kearney, was the best tutor anyone could wish for, especially for his support, guidance, and enthusiasm.
What are you future plans?
I plan to stay in London until the end of this year, and finally move back to Cyprus in January 2017 to work as a Communications Assistant at the Organisation of the European Capital of Culture Pafos, 2017. One of my biggest aspirations for the upcoming months is to work on a self initiated project called ‘Idolio Project’. I hope ‘Idolio Project’ will become the first Sculpture Exhibition, in my hometown, featuring nine large-scale sculptures inspired by Ancient Cypriot Idols. The project will include open calls, talks and workshops.
After moving back to Cyprus I will continue producing work, and exploring the possibilities of creating site-specific sculptures and installations in different locations of the island.
Where is your favourite place in Camberwell/Peckham?
The 3D workshops, located at Wilson Road, also known as Neal’s Yard.
Do you have an artist influence?
I have experiences that influenced me, such as a bi-communal art project; Greek-Cypriots and Turkish-Cypriots spent some days together bonding and crafting paper origamis. I am also influenced by theories, in particular those relating to community art, participation and social happenings. My artist influences are John Coplans, Andy Goldsworthy, Sarah Lucas, Manuel Vason, Erwin Wurn, and many more.
And finally, do you have any advice to students looking to start the MA Visual Arts: Fine Art Digital course at Camberwell?
One piece of advice that I am constantly saying to everyone: be curious, don’t be afraid to ask and experiment as much as you can, with all the resources provided across UAL. Embrace failures, challenges, experiment, experiment, experiment and enjoy. You will be amazed how quickly a year can go by.