BOX2 was the second Material Voice Covid-secure collaboration, exploring new ways of sharing ideas and working together. Gillian Brent initiated the process and made a box which was passed in turn to Sarah Villeneau, Kate Langrish-Smith, Mandy Gamsu and Clee Claire Lee.
Due to the Covid-19 pandemic and lockdown the projects that the Material Voice artists were planning for 2020 were put on hold or just disappeared.
In mid April 2020 the artists agreed to find ways to recalibrate the practices and dissemination of their work together in response to the new situation. To start this they decided to experiment with new ways of collaborating that were possible within the lockdown guidance and could be shared on-line.
View the process of the first project The BOX here.
The opening of ‘What is the Matter? Materials, Commodities, Narratives’ at Kelham Island Museum on 12th September 2019 was a great success. There were over 150 visitors and the museum was buzzing with conversations and excitement about seeing a well-loved Sheffield institution with new eyes. Many people commented on how having contemporary art amongst the museum’s displays made them notice and reconsider artefacts and stories.
Material Voice were awarded funding by Making Ways to establish themselves as a peer mentoring group that through a programme of structured meetings will develop their arts practice and bring the work of themselves and other women artists in Sheffield to prominence.
The Material Voice collective held two day meetings. The first day the artists came together to discuss and critique each other’s work and to explore the connections they shared. The second day the artists invited Abi Spinks, a freelance curator from Nottingham, to talk with them about their practices and to give her expertise about how to exhibit together.
Making Ways is an ambitious three-year project to demonstrate, celebrate and develop exceptional contemporary visual art produced in Sheffield. It is funded by Arts Council England, Sheffield City Council, The University of Sheffield and Sheffield Hallam University.