Words Hadeel Mohamed
The classic cobalt blue and white design found on Willow plates has Chinese origins, but its popularity in British homes means it is often viewed as quintessentially English. This is just one of the complex hallmarks of culture that artist Mary Evans deftly touches on in her exhibition, Cut And Paste, at London gallery Tiwani Contemporary.
“Pattern is a strong leitmotif in my practice," says the Nigerian-born, London-based artist, who combines her art with lecturing at Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design. "However the work is rarely pure ornament but often reveals the historical, architectural or social threads of its source.”
As well as her Willow Plate Series (2012), featuring delicate paper plates created in the Willow tradition but with people in the foreground against pastoral scenes, Evans presents paper cut-outs, drawings and a new, large-scale site-specific installation.
Another piece on display is the video work Liverpool Street (2012), in which Evans – an alumni of GLOSCAT (now Gloucestershire College), Goldsmiths College and The Rijksakademie – asks how and why a location in Ghana came to be named after the famous street in London.
Cut And Paste runs from September 14-October 20 at Tiwani Contemporary, 16 Little Portland Street, London W1W 8BP