Marlborough is pleased to present the work of Nichlas Pankhurst, winner of The Valerie Beston Artists’ Trust Prize 2010.
The Valerie Beston Artists’ Trust was established in 2006 on the death of Miss Valerie Beston, a former director of the gallery, to support artists at the beginning of their careers. The charity is collaborating with the Royal College of Art to award an annual prize to a postgraduate student selected from the degree show. This comprises a studio for a year at SPACE, a financial contribution towards materials, tutorial support generously provided by the RCA, and an exhibition at the end of the year. Catherine Lampert and Pilar Ordovas have kindly selected the winner of the prize.
The exhibition presents works in oil and resin and photographs, which loosely use the influence of the film and theatre term ‘mise-en-scène’. Translated as ‘to put on stage’ it can be used to describe all aspects of the set up of a scene as well as the mood and inner workings. Applied to image making it suggests a process of selections made to create an image and a consciousness of the fourth wall casting its shadow on to the scene with a focus less in the message and more in the emotional tone and mood.
This term is often used to describe the feel of the atmosphere present in silent films such as The Unknown (Tod Browning), Metropolis (Fritz Lang) and The Cabinet of Dr Caligari (Robert Wiene) and Vampyr (Carl Dreyer), which has influenced the work. Fiction and reality are both subscribed to with equal importance and both can be present. The work also tries to show the history of its development like an expand diagram or electrical schematic.
Unattainable locations, like the worlds in which the silent movies inhabited, and shapes and forms that seem to inhabit spaces beyond their natural placing in the world, symbols and signs with undisclosed messages make up the work. They are used as vehicles to carry a more mixed message perhaps not dissimilar to the transgressive nature of dreams.
Nicholas Pankhurst lives and works in London. He studied at Chelsea School of Art, 1997-2000 and the Royal College of Art, 2011. He has exhibited in numerous exhibitions including Moscow International Biennale 2010, The Strawberry Thief, Fine Art Society (curated by Jeremy Deller); Chelsea Arts Club Trust 2011, Piñata Party, Peckham Hotel and David David Gallery 2012. In addition to the Valerie Beston Artists’ Trust award he also received The Parallel Prize and The Chelsea Arts Club Award in 2011. He has work in the London Institute. Website:www.nicholaspankhurst.com