5 June to 26 July 2014
John Frankland’s new work for Peer’s gallery space explores the parameters of, and teeters on the edge between sculptural and architectural intervention. He has constructed an external aperture onto the gallery façade that seemingly extends the interior walls, ceiling and floor through the frontage of the building and onto the street. The work exists simultaneously inside and out.
Eponymously named Peer, this work is both subject and object of Frankland’s enquiry, but the intention here is not one of dispassionate academicism, rather one of playful conundrum – or perhaps even folly. The gallery space itself is stripped naked of all extraneous or cluttering effects such as store cupboards, heaters or lighting track to allow Frankland to engage purely with the architecture. But by exposing the bare bones of the space, he has not produced a harsh aesthetic environment. Through the application of a soft peachy colour throughout, and through the exact and laborious rendering of large rounded edges to the exterior framing element, Frankland has created a kind of baroque minimalism.
Another key element of Frankland’s work is how our perception of scale can be influenced by architectural intervention. Peer is a small gallery, yet Peer is a massive and enterable enclosure dissected by the building’s shop-front. The gallery has, in a sense, become a husk around which the work is built. As seen from the street, the interior space is both framed and contained as one may perceive a stage set. By contrast, when viewed from inside, the street itself becomes the constructed view, controlled and encased by the projected aperture and thereby creating an almost cinematic apprehending of the world outside.
In recent years, John Frankland has had solo shows at Matt’s Gallery, London; Compton Verney, Warwickshire; Project Art Centre, Dublin and theRoyal Festival Hall, London. His work is in private collections in London and Sweden, the Arts Council Collection, The British Council Collection and Saatchi Collection. He teaches MA Sculpture at the Royal College of Art and is represented by Matt’s Gallery, London.