William Cobbing: The Duddo Field Club Audit at Tintype Gallery
Renowned artist William Cobbing’s latest exhibition The Duddo Field Club Audit is a proud display of his talent for sculpture work and accompanying visual performance that alludes to the merging of landscape with human form.
Nestled on a bustling Islington street, Tintype Gallery provides the perfect backdrop for Cobbing’s selection of ceramic hangings, domineering one half of the space. Each has been imprinted with oversized book covers from a range of publishers, all bearing the image of a rock from Albert Camus’s Myth of Sisyphus. Cobbing perfectly evokes a unique perspective on the imagery of each through his technique of imprinting letterpress blocks into the clay surfaces and then continually reworking the impression by distorting or erasing.
This sculpting artistry is finely exhibited in a video work called Palimpsest, housed in the back corner of the gallery. It depicts Cobbing presenting a conversation between a man and a woman. Often video displays in exhibitions fail to attract more than a momentary pause, but given the small scale of the project overall, Palimpsest is a rewarding attraction to spend time observing. The speed with which Cobbing works to write sentences in the wet clay, erase them and start the next line is captivating, producing a fluid movement of dialogue between two silent voices.
Another highlight is the monolithic-looking sculpture that derives appearance from the anthropomorphic Duddo Five Stones in Northumberland. The clay is manipulated with rocks and finished with a random selection of books slotted into the surface to represent Cobbing’s vision of inaccessible knowledge and trivia.
When visiting the exhibition, one can’t help but long for more to be on offer, given some of the empty space on one half of the gallery. Nonetheless, the ceramics and video performance complement one another well to produce an intriguing insight into Copping’s one-of-a-kind techniques for manipulating our view of words and language.
On Saturday 4th April, William Cobbing will present a new performance on the final day of the exhibition, which is bound to be another visionary display from a unique artist. Don’t miss it.
William Cobbing: The Duddo Field Club Audit is at Tintype Gallery until 4th April 2015, for further information visit here.