Studio Voltaire elsewhere: Nnena Kalu at Cork Street Galleries
Last October, Studio Voltaire’s Clapham gallery shuttered to begin its Capital Project, an ambitious renovation and reignition that will vastly expand exhibition space while intergrating affordable artists’ studios. But the not-for-profit organisation isn’t on hold, creating Studio Voltaire elsewhere, a series of ambitious offsite events for 2020 and some of the most pivotal commissions within the institution’s 25-year history.
Cork Street Galleries welcomes Nnena Kalu, who launches the programme with her first London solo exhibit, following celebrated presentations at Glasgow International (2018) and Hull’s Humber Street Gallery (2019). Kalu is an important member of Studio Voltaire’s artistic community, shown in 2012 and 2015 group exhibitions.
Exploring space, scale and texture through repetitive and durational sculptural processes, Kalu has worked in situ, responding to the site’s architecture. Recent works have begun with compact ‘cocoons’ of textiles, thread and paper, tightly packed in cellophane and tape – these spheres of bound materials are collected together around pre-constructed apertures and existing structures, establishing a foundation from which the artist builds complex installations.
The commission is presented in partnership with ActionSpace, a leading organisation supporting the development of artists with learning disabilities, which has been based at Studio Voltaire since 1999.