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Artist Statement


I am a conceptually representational painter and installation artist, working within a narrative that questions perceptions of art and the conditions of painting. My work combines found objects, manipulated semiotics and painterly language. Through a systematic unpicking and critique of the the modern obsession with consumption and possession. Presenting the objectification of painting and the commodification of artefact.

I am an object-oriented practitioner exploring a perceptual process that balances aesthetic consideration, conceptual theory, and contemporary materialist ideology. Objects and assemblages combine objective observations of art with its raw materials; a natural narrative that hovers between incomplete intention and unintentional expression. An examination of the unintentional to explore the agency of objects through a subjective perspective.

Juxtaposing intentional composition with incidental form to equalise traditional hierarchies of art and allow new conditions to take form. Presenting the ‘everyday’ in art, depicting sequences of actions that echo the relationship between painting and performance. These are works that explore painting and are defined as painting; a combination of painting with its periphery.

I collect unwanted artworks, materials, and actions derived from the process of other artists, using base materials that contain the imprint of other authors. Utilising the ‘useless’, diverting their purpose, allowing the materials to exceed and reject their definition, while extending their potentiality and limitations. These objects were functional in artistic practice, discarded as finished, here re-presented for consideration in communication. They embody the time they have been used, becoming records; objectifications of time and process. Their value is more than the sum of their parts, more than their materiality, more than what we see. Their value has shifted.

My work brings the audience into conversation with the functional object in painting, through a formal reconsideration of material and meaning. Re-signifying value to examine the things we are looking at and the ways we look at them. Re-presenting the artefacts of painting to invoke its process, adding context to objects through their definition. Working with the placement of objects in space as foundational process these artworks examine the dialogue inherent within space, and the alignment of our subtractive perception. An ontological examination of objects that presents an epistemological resignification.

Through the interruption of conventional assumptions my practice explores the boundaries. Representing the process of making, re-presenting that process to the viewer; beginning new conversations between materials, subject and space.

For me, the most important element is the challenge to look at things differently; to see the narrative and philosophy in the questioning of ‘Art’. After all: which is more real, the world or the way we frame it?

My purpose is to create things that allow this to happen, they don't only represent the idea, they are the idea. Without them there is no idea.

Ally McGinn has a studio in Bath, has recently completed her BA and MA at Bath Spa university and is working towards her PhD.