Anna Perach: Holes

Anna Perach: Holes
Anna Perach, watercolour for Gasworks exhibition, 2023. Courtesy the artist
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Anna Perach: Holes
1st February 2023 – 28th April 2024
Gasworks
155 Vauxhall St
London SE11 5RH

London-based Ukraine artist  Anna Perach‘s work delves into the relationship between personal and cultural myths, drawing inspiration from a variety of sources such as fairy tales, domesticity, and psychoanalytic theory. Through her sculptures, she creates hybrid female archetypes that explore ideas of identity, gender, and craft. Her art is deeply rooted in historical narratives, and she often depicts enigmatic female characters that exist in a space that is both inside and outside of their bodies.

Perach is holding her first solo exhibition in the UK, which is called “Holes“, and is her most ambitious project to date. The exhibition represents a site of rebirth, where non-conforming and subjugated bodies take control, pushing beyond conventional understandings of flesh and skin.

Anna Perach: Holes
Anna Perach, Mistress of the Desert, performance. Photo by Lena Gomon.
Courtesy the artist and Fireflies Project

Holes” comprises large-scale sculptural forms and installations and is inspired by instances in history where religious or scientific patriarchal authorities viewed the female body as something that transgressed the rules of morality and nature. These moments include witch trials from the Renaissance period, anatomical Venus sculptures from the 17th century designed for disassembly and exploration of the feminine interior, as well as the work of the 19th-century neurologist Jean-Martin Charcot, who treated women diagnosed with hysteria.

Anna Perach: Holes
Anna Perach, Gasp, 2021. Exhibition view at ADA, Rome. Courtesy of the artist and ADA

In her exhibition, Perach creates a space for her characters to transcend their assumed characteristics of good and evil, science and mystery, and enter a liminal space of unknown and potential. According to Perach, the characters’ bodies are in transition and transformation, breaking the boundaries of the self as an impenetrable unit, and thus breaking the boundaries of societal rules by metaphor.

Perach uses a unique visual vocabulary and employs an intricate tufting technique, commonly used to produce domestic textiles, to create surreal wearable sculptures or skins that are often used for performances. These sculptures are richly detailed and layered, defying conventional expectations with stretched limbs, engorged features, and uncanny faces. These alluring yet monstrous sculptures blur the lines between interior and exterior.

Anna Perach: Holes
Anna Perach, watercolour for Gasworks exhibition, 2023. Courtesy the artist

In her exhibition titled “Holes,” Perach takes things further and activates the sculptures in a new two-part performance, which will take place at selected times during the exhibition. The performance will feature movement direction by Luigi Ambrosio, sound by Laima Leyton, and performances by Agnieszka Szczotka, Anna Guzak, Maria Sole Montacci, and Chiara Pagani.

Gasworks commissions are supported by Catherine Petitgas, Gasworks Exhibitions Supporters, and the Anna Perach Exhibition Circle.

Anna Perach: Holes opens on the 1st of February 2023 until the 28th of April 2024 Gasworks

©2023 Anna Perach, Gasworks

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