My Artist Spotlight series serves to highlight and engage with artists whilst providing a brief overview and analysis of their works. No matter the artist, or style, I'm here to shine a light on amazing artists who deserve some time in the spotlight!

Sharon Kivland

Kivland’s work in her The Natural Forms exhibition exists in a fantastical world of anthropomorphic, metaphorical animals preparing for a revolution against capital in a reworking and re-association of the past. Her work is imbued with a sense of anticipation of some radical change of a revolution that is only ever a day away. She seeks to reclaim historical symbols, such as Mari-Ann of France, ignoring any true chronology as she explores the constantly recycled narratives saturating our existence and transforming into the chapters of her own book with her own recurring characters. There is a artificial lure like that of an upmarket shop to her exhibition, as if we are perusing which stories we wish to pick up and pursue much like the foxes seeking to disseminate Marx to all passersby. Her interest in the duality of words and the subversion of punning is also present in her dead anthropomorphic, caricatured characters and the stitched words in the garments they surround and attend to, playing on the materialistic objectification of women and the irony of the ‘natural’ animals in such a hyperbolically parodic beauteous setting, attempting to make them more ‘natural’ than they already are and seeking to own them as commodity and pleasant object.

Kivalnd’s work with the tension between written and visual languages and narratives interests me greatly, the way in which she then uses these to create her own reworked and reclaimed historically recycled narratives  through playing on metaphorical characters is incredibly subversive and witty. The tensions between written and visual language and the abstracted fantasy contexts they are placed in in order to highlight the absurdity and cruelty of perpetuated ideals.

Published by Rebecca Elise