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"Andrew Lewis: Systems"
2002-04-17 until 2002-05-17
Institute of International Visual Arts
Andrew Lewis' sculptural work explores the impact of urban systems on
everyday lives. Via a mixture of political engagement, consummate craftwork and a
wayward sense of humour, Lewis exposes the gap between the true nature
of multi-racial Britain and the tourist industry's pastoral idea of the
nation. Systems, Lewis' solo show at TheSpace at inIVA, features several
newly commissioned projects.
Southern Hospitality is realised in fired ceramic, which represents a
'new media' for Lewis. A clutch of houses nestles at the bottom of a
cliff. A white precipice overhangs this terrace of homeliness, whilst
the waves lap ominously below. Here, Lewis defines the quintessential
folk image of Britain, a landscape that is often suffused with a latent
suspicion of incomers.
In White Van Men GB, twelve replica white transit vans are jammed
together in the middle of a road junction. Originally representing the
ubiquitous mode of transport for the small business operator, Lewis
meshes a potentially inflammatory road rage situation with lovingly
crafted, finely detailed handiwork.
Race-ism and Winos-complexity Fruit are metaphors for the vagaries of
human behaviour, from the futility of racism to the universality of
drunkenness. Whilst engaging with beauty and humour in equal measure,
Lewis observes and documents a contemporary Britain that is wholly at
odds with the high-tech, post-industrial country it wants to be.
Andrew Lewis lives and works in Croydon. In the early 1990s he trained
as an architect at North London University and the Mackintosh School of
Architecture, Glasgow. Lewis has recently been showing in gallery
spaces; his previous solo exhibitions include Ark Royale with Cheese,
Laurent Delaye Gallery, London; and The Spatial Awareness Show, fig-1,
London. Andrew Lewis is represented by Laurent Delaye Gallery, London.
Ark Royale - Double Cheese, 2001.
Courtesy Laurent Delaye Gallery