Slade School one to watch artist Jocelyn McGregor strikes a discordant note using the fragmented female form.
Material has suppressed qualities, aspects that we are not meant to see. They are facilitators for something else. Gravitating towards states of matter – crystallisation, extrusion, decay. Jocelyn’s sculptural installations investigate the discordance between the basic physical elements of the natural world and the development of synthetic materials, media, and the built and virtual environments that shape our daily lives. To find this perpetual confrontation of the synthetic and the natural we have only to look beyond Western, urban service industries to the rural landscape, and to global sites of production and export.
She rails against the objectification of women in startling pieces using the fragmented female form in a variety of incongruous materials.
Originally from the Lake District, Jocelyn graduated from a BFA in Fine Art from The University of Oxford in 2010. She completed residencies in China with Diocesan Boys School (Hong Kong), Where Where Art Space (Beijing) and Red Gate Gallery (Beijing), 2010-11. She was selected for Creative Routes 2013 (artsdepot, London), became Lead Artist for ACAVA and Artist Mentor for the Koestler Trust. She is currently studying an MFA in Sculpture at the Slade School of Fine Art. Recent group exhibitions include, ‘Doremifasolasido’ at the Merz Barn, Cumbria, ‘Business As Usual’ at both Set the Controls for the Heart of the Sun (Leeds) and Turf Projects (London), and ‘Time Pieces’ at Caustic Coastal (Manchester); and solo exhibitions, ‘Sock Pocket’, Platform 1 Gallery (London) and ‘Glass Nose’, The Merz Barn (Cumbria).
Philtres 2015, plaster, Vaseline, silicon, oil paint, glass, catseyes, metal powders, dimensions variable.
Jennifer 2016, 120 x 60 cm Plaster, Florence Paintmakers’ haematite pigment, Vaseline, wood
‘Jennifer’ is two sculptures, each is a grouping of body-cast legs and elbows. The first is reproduced in a mixture of plaster and haematite pigment, polished with vaseline and resting on wooden batons. The second is an outdoor sculpture made from white concrete coloured with haematite pigment, and planted in the ground. The pigment used in both is made by the Florence Paintmakers from haematite extracted from the disused Florence Mine, the oldest mine in Britain when it closed in 2008.
The title has multiple references: the old meaning of the name as ‘fair one’ and ‘phantom’; the horror movie, ‘Jennifer’s Body,’ by Karin Kusama; and the song by Hole of the same name that Kusama used as a starting point for her movie. Jocelyn’s sculptures build upon these layers to explore the objectification and fragmentation of the female body throughout history, and the relationship with the personification of nature as female. Her sculptures have an indoor and an outdoor persona; the first is representative of the cosseted, ‘virtuous’ woman, and cultivated nature; and the latter is the adverse image of the ‘untamed’ outsider.
Slade Degree Shows 19 May – 18 Jun
The annual Slade Degree Shows, showcasing artworks by graduating students from the UCL Slade School of Fine Art, will take place May and June at the Slade School of Fine Art.
The Slade School of Fine Art approaches the practice of contemporary art that inform an experimental, research-oriented and imaginative way. An art school with a world leading reputation, the Slade makes a significant contribution to the field of contemporary art both nationally and internationally.
The Slade has a lively and dynamic studio-led research culture. All studio staff are practising artists with significant exhibition profiles, actively involved in research as well as teaching.
© Images Jocelyn McGregor