Two new shows are opening at Bristol’s Spike Island tonight, from Reto Pulfer and Patrick Staff. Pulfer will be performing live at the public event this evening and the two shows will continue until 20 September. Two very different, ambitious pieces from young artists.
Patrick Staff, a British artist working between London and Los Angeles, is exhibiting The Foundation – a film work that explores queer intergenerational relationships at the Tom of Finland Foundation in Los Angeles. The entire film was shot at the Foundation, which serves as the archive of the famous gay icon and erotic artist Tom of Finland. Staff’s film focuses on the relationships between the people who manage the archive and the manner in which the collection is collated.
Swiss, self-taught artist Reto Pulfer creates experiential works in a variety of media including; textiles, food, spices, paint, wood, words, music and pretty much anything else he can find. He aims to create mental spaces (or ‘Zustände’) for the audience to become immersed in. Rather suitably for today’s climate Gewässerzeiten is water-themed, formed using a giant fishing net, silt from a local river and watercolours that represent different territories that are surrounded by sea. Bells, ribbons and dehydrated food hang from the net, as will the fruits of the artist’s opening night ceramic making. Pulfer will be working with sixteenth century Japanese Raku technique, allowing cracked surfaces and unpredictable colours to happen organically. This is not just an immersive piece about water but also about artistic technique itself, the marks of making clearly visible.
Reto Pulfer, Gewässerzeiten and Patrick Staff, The Foundation are both opening tonight at 6pm, Spike Island and will run until 20 September. There will be a ceramics workshop on 13 September.