Marking their first solo exhibition, the immersive show examines processes of beauty, creation and decay – considering the inevitability of ageing, and its potential for artistic renewal.
Comprised of artists Laura Perrett and Nicholas Ellis, SNIK’s mixed media works unite a background in handmade stencil creation, with a dedication towards Pre–Raphaelite ideals concerning nature, colour and movement.
At the Crypt gallery, SNIK present their works in a decaying environment through which viewers must navigate: a backdrop of flowers, themselves in varying stages of decomposition.
Set across three underground spaces, the first room presents vibrant multi-layer portraits executed through richly textured stencils, presented alongside installation images of SNIK’s high-profile international mural paintings.
This is followed by a middle section progressing towards more muted single-layer figurative works, created across rusted and beaten panels of metal, as wells sculptures rendered in bronze. Reflecting the gradual ageing processes inflicted by outdoor elements, these works focus on the body and decay.
The final room presents lightbox stencil projections bringing together motifs from some of SNIKs most recognisable street works. Providing the room’s only light source, the black and white works appear ghostly in their surroundings. Representing both the bare bones of complete loss, whilst nodding towards the possibility of regeneration (themselves a recreation of SNIK’s previous works lost to time), the final sections ultimately asks the viewer to ‘hope in new works appearing out of the ashes and rubble of the past’.
‘In our daily lives we chose to avoid closely considering things that are decaying or fading, affiliating it with death and loss. Here we show the process as a whole, and ask the audience to acknowledge the beauty in all stages. We hope if the viewer can learn to focus on and enjoy the process of life changing, and the slow decay of each artwork, they will discover new beauty and depths – thus giving it prolonged meaning, life and memory.’
All photos: Julie , except the main portrait taken via the artists