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The Bay Window Project

June 5, 2010 by Ellie


Six Artists in a Frame curated by sybin

A new exciting project space is opening in Fitzrovia, but it's not another commercial gallery.


Why: A private residence with tenants. A square bay window that overlooks the street, looking like a huge frame hanging on an anonymous building’s faÀ§ade. When the curtains are open, from the street it is possible to gaze in, peeping inside other people’s homes and lives. The bay window has been designated as a functional place, like a white cube, to host art. This unusual, limited space (193 x 180 x 60 cm), which is visible from the street only, is offered to six artists to create, one after the other, a site-specific work engaging with the concepts of home and gallery, private and public, gaze and voyeurism, disruption and continuity.

Sybin is a young curator based in London and interested in supporting young and established artists, especially through the creation of peculiar show settings outside the so-called normal exhibition parameters. One aspect is being able to bring art into the street, like an open-air gallery, for every passer-by to enjoy. SybinQ Art Project is a not-for-profit association aiming to create networks and sustainable conditions for the commissions of new artworks.

The first artist invited to exhibit in The Bay Window is Martin Westwood whose projects investigate the state of contemporary society, with a recurring focus on themes of bureaucracy, commerce, economy and corporate culture. He creates complex systems of codes and symbols that incorporate and reference familiar objects – suspended ceilings, water coolers, cheque books, promotional balloons, invoice sheets - artificially decomposed and then reconstructed. His artworks vary in scale and format from large installations to paintings and multi-layered collages.

For The Bay Window Project, Martin is presenting Flat-field, a work which takes inspiration from daily social relations. The eye is captured by the bright background, on which different images, deprived of their three-dimensional status, are reduced or enlarged to the same size. The viewer recognises objects, details, places and situations that we are so familiar with we experience them almost automatically. The street, the advertising signs, the private dimension of the window switching to public: everything constitutes a hierarchy of objects that the artist is trying to disassemble and analyse on the base of the Actor Network Theory (ANT) studies. Developed, among others, by Bruno Latour, ANT is a branch of Sociology trying to map relations that are at the same time material (between things) and semiotic (between concepts), and tries to understand how certain relations (networks), which imply human interaction with inanimate things, are formed and kept. If a network ceases to work, each single element in it can be examined and re-interpreted.

Who: Martin Westwood
What: Flat-field, 2010, 193 x 180 cm, laminated print on window glazing.
When: Wednesday 9th June at 6:30 pm - Sunday 23rd June.
Where: SybinQ Art Project, The Window on Cleveland St, London W1T 6NW The window is visible when Cleveland Street meets Carburton Street.

To celebrate the inaugural exhibition of The Bay Window Project, please join the curator and artist for a drink at JET LAG, 125 Cleveland Street London W1T 6QB Tel. 0203 3705838