Meet the artist: Katharina Fitz
Katharina Fitz is a Nottingham based artist. She has recently taken part in a group show at Nottingham Contemporary called Aftermath.The Aftermath exhibition is an annual collaboration where students on the MFA course at Nottingham Trent University respond critically to the winter exhibition at Nottingham Contemporary. The show offers insights into the influence that exhibitions can have on an artist’s creative process and challenges viewers to meticulously observe this process.
Katharina’s practice is focused mainly on conceptual photography as well as sculpture. Since 2016 she has introduced different mediums such as casting, mould making, woodwork, and ceramics into her practice. Within her practice, she is concerned with subjects surrounding urban sociology showing the structures, processes, phenomenon, and problems that are part of urban life and human interactions with a special interest in shared memory and social and cultural aspects of life.
She is one of the two artists selected for the Re-imagine the City residency, first of 4 artist residencies organized and curated by Artcore between 2018/2019.
We visited her in the artist studio, where we discovered some interesting aspects of her research concerning the British Pub culture as a forum where different generations meet and socialise.
Have a read of what she says!
Where are you based?
I am currently based in Nottingham.
How would you like to use this residency to develop your current research and how do you think the time spent at Artcore can benefit your process of doing?
The specific theme of the Artcore residency is very interesting for the development of my practice, as I mainly work with subjects surrounding the city. As a sculptor, the production grant also supports me in the realisation of the project and the studio space offered gives me the opportunity to get to know the other resident and get involved in the community at Artore.
In the proposal, you mentioned many time your interest in developing a project about of the disappearing of the public houses in the UK. Why are you interested in it and how you aim to connect it with your current practice?
Pubs are places for people of all ages and classes to interact and socialise. They have got an important cultural value and mostly have a positive impact on local communities and strengthen the feeling of belonging to a place. I am interested in the subject because interconnectivity and integration have always played an important role in my practice. The closing and demolishing of pubs is a big issue within urban areas, but on the other hand there lies a lot of potential in the reopening of micro breweries and reimagening of new pubs. I intend to use the object of the metal beer keg to represent the connectivity and history of the pub culture. Kegs are objects that are moved around the city between the pubs creating connecting points between locations. All its dents and scratches are a proof of history and time the object has gone through.
How and when have you decided to combine photography and sculpture?
I come from a photography background and started introducing sculpture about two years ago. At the moment I am in the process of exploring the language of sculpture and once I feel comfortable with it I would like to reintroduce photography and combine the two.
Where does a practice like yours find a platform for engagement with communities?
In the case of photography, the integration of communities was mainly based on conversations with people around the photographed areas. In the case of my current practice as a sculptor I am considering the process of marking out specific places within the city, and let the people develop an awareness of the changing of their surrounding. The idea of the process is important, how things in our daily surrounding are made and how we can start to reappreciate its value away from the overproduction of things in our consumerist society.
What is the most interesting or inspiring thing you have seen or been to recently, and why?
The most inspiring exhibition I have visited recently has been the Rachel Whiteread retrospective at the Tate Britain. Rachel Whiteread in an artist that has always been an important reference for my work both in photography and sculpture. Her work has taught me how to read and understand sculpture and the importance of the interconnection between the viewer and the object within the space.
What keeps you curious?
Conversations, people, places, different cultures, architecture, music, nature… and TRAVELLING, which has always been in the center of my life and has always given me new inspirations and the opportunity to reevaluate things from different perspectives.
Which other artists’ work do you admire, and why?
Rachel Whiteread – her idea of the positive and the negative has made me understand our place as a viewer in relation to the object.
Gabriel Orozco – I love the way he combines sculpture (installation) and photography
Holly Hendry – an interesting young sculptor, also working with the idea of casting, space, positive and negative, material, city, and connections.
What do you think is the role of artists in the current society?
In my point of view, there is no such thing as THE role of the artist in our current society. I think
there are many roles that artists play as varied as society itself. One thing that I think is
important when it comes to art in a general term, is the question of how do we experience the
world that surrounds us AFTER we have experienced the work. How does art change our
perception of the world…
What are your thoughts on being an artist in Derby?
As I am currently based in Nottingham, it is difficult to answer this question from the point of view of an artist in Derby, but what I do feel relevant is potential this residency offers to connect artists from Derby and Nottingham for the potential of future collaborations.
How do you see Artcore, as an art institution, to support you at this stage of your career?
The Artcore residency is very important for me at this point in my career and my involvement with the place. I came to the UK in 2016 and it is very important for me to be able to establish fruitful connections with institutions such as Artcore, it gives me the opportunity to realise a new body of work.
Meet the artist: Jess Price
“Jess Price is going to graduate in Fine Arts at Derby University on the 1st of June. She is one of the two artists selected for Re-imagine the City residency, first of 4 artists residencies organized and curated by Artcore between 2018/2019.
We visited her in the artist studio, where we went through her current research in term of productions, experimentation with materials and cross media with a particular interest on how she will use this residency to develop her career and artist research.
Have a look of what she says!”
After going for a meeting with someone from Derby City Mission, I was able to get more knowledge on homelessness in Derby. This information included other homeless charities as well as numbers surrounding homelessness which helped open my eyes to the problem. These numbers are from a night shelter that took place over 4 months in the winter. Over those months there were 319 guests, a number that surprised me as I previously found out –from the same interview- that there are only 40 registered homeless people in derby. This is something I felt important to share as it shows how bad the homeless crisis really is in Derby. Another thing I have been curious about, is how people in our community view the materials I use in my work. I wanted to ask people who are both from an artistic background as well as people who aren’t, to get a larger range of thoughts and opinions. I asked this question on several of my social medias, on my art Instagram as well as my personal and on Facebook. Using these different platforms gives me the chance to communicate with people from different backgrounds. Here is the question I asked and some of the responses.
For me it kind of gives me security to look at because most buildings houses are made from bricks and they give you a roof over your head, somewhere to be safe and dry and warm and can protect you from the outside world.
It reminds me that no matter how solid something may seem.
Broken bricks with lines the tension to me represents what’s weighting me down or what’s holding me back. The colour has meaning also. Either traditionally or of your own meaning to a particular colour…can invoke memories?
The string signifies the many different connections we may have on Facebook.
The strings possibly represent fragility?
Re-Imagine the city residency
Artist selected announcement
Artcore is delighted to announce Katharina Fitz and Jess Price as the two artists selected for Re-imagine the City, a two months residency focusing on learning from the city and use of public space. The project aims to explore the issues that shape the city. The artists selected will work with local communities to map, re-imagine and influence the places where we live and work.
Katharina Fitz is a Nottigham based artist whose work focuses mainly on conceptual photography as well as sculpture. Since 2016 she has introduced different mediums such as casting, mould making, woodwork and ceramics into her practice. She is concerned with subjects surrounding urban sociology showing the structures, processes, phenomenon, and problems that are part of urban life and human interactions with a special interest in shared memory and social and cultural aspects of life.
she classifies objects into groups in order to appreciate their characteristics and reflect upon their narratives. Therefore repetition and the interconnections between object and subject play an important role in her practice. Her work is characterized by an objective and conceptual line following clear structures.
To find out more about Katharina Fitz, please visit: www.katharinafitz.com
Jess Price is a Derby based artist whose practice gravitates towards addressing political themes more and more. She is especially interested in how politics is portrayed in art. When looking at political artists she has found their views have been shown either aggressively obvious or subtly hidden within a piece. She is finding the balance between telling the audience my ideas and keeping the piece itself open to interpretation.
One way she likes to guide her audience towards her concepts is in her use of materials. She chooses to create sculptures that combine materials that everyone can recognise as a necessity.
In her work, she aims to highlight unspoken current affairs and bring them to the attention of the general public in a format they would find more engaging than their usual news sources.
Working around these unspoken issues, she also likes to reflect on the ideas of cause and effect and how we are controlled in what we do, see and know.
To find out more about Jess Price, please visit: https://jesspricefineart.wixsite.com/jessprice
- Residency dates:15/05/2018 to 10/07/2018
- Exhibition dates: 19/07/2018 to 19/08/2018