Young Portsmouth artists explore environment and society as they exhibit creative work in major show at Aspex gallery

FOUR young Portsmouth-based artists have been chosen to take part in a major exhibition.

By Lizzie Curzen
Wednesday, 3rd November 2021, 11:51 am
Updated Wednesday, 3rd November 2021, 11:51 am

Connor Hallen Clements and Daniel Webb from the University of Portsmouth, Anna Marris from the Winchester School of Art, and Laura Buckle from the University of Chichester are among 12 young artists from local universities who have been selected to feature at the exhibition at Aspex in Portsmouth.

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Vickie Fear, curator, said: ‘Conor and Daniel’s artworks offer two very different perspectives and approaches to understanding our world today.

Inside the exhibition space

‘Although both are setting their work in fictional realms, Daniel’s is an idyllic utopia, a CGI holiday destination we might like to visit; whereas Conor’s zines and prints transport us to a dystopic Orwellian world.

‘Our graduates are asking timely questions about our environment and how we interact with it, and also how society supports us as individuals needing to lead creative lives.

‘Anna and Laura also address these concerns with their site responsive works, investigating human relationships with place.’

In 2021 Aspex celebrates 40 years of supporting emerging artists and engaging audiences, through the delivery of a programme of exhibitions, off-site projects and participatory


The exhibition is part of the Platform Graduate Award showcase led by Contemporary Visual Arts Network (CVAN) in Partnership with Aspex and three other galleries.

The Platform Graduate Award is an initiative to support emerging graduate artistic talent to further their practice following graduation and has been running in the South-East region since 2012.

The winner of this year’s award will receive a £2,000 bursary, as well as 12 months of mentoring support from a practising artist.

Oliver Sumner, CVAN Southeast manager, said: ‘This award provides a much-needed springboard for artists graduating from our local universities.

‘It could not happen without the enduring engagement of our Higher Education partners, and of course this year’s four host venues in the CVAN Southeast network.

‘My thanks go to them all, and most of all to the artists themselves who have amazed us despite the pandemic disruption of their final year.’

Works featured at the exhibition include moving image, photography and watercolour and pencil works, as well as collage and large scale sculptures.

Themes range from threads of childhood experience to surreal and the uncanny.

The exhibition will be open at Aspex until December 23.

A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron

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