Sep 5, 2011

Rachel I'Anson

From Without a lens, Darkly
 1. Please tell us about the work you will be showing in the 2011 E17 Art Trail.
This year I am participating in EDGE at Inky Cuttlefish, where I have my darkroom; the group show at The Mill and showing a 3D piece in Lot One Ten on Hoe Street. I have also illustrated a poem by Angelena Demaria for the Poetry Trail and will be flowering prints for Art Grows on Trees on 3 and 10 September.

An image from EDGE
 EDGE is a group show exhibiting work by Anna Alcock, Kirsten Schmidt, Esther Neslen and myself. For the show I have been exploring snakes in art and their symbolic meanings; mainly linking into the representation of Eve. Working in photography I have combined digital and chemical darkroom techniques to produce a series of prints which feels like the beginning of an ongoing piece.

At Lot One Ten I am showing Without A Lens, Darkly a 3D photographic piece which the viewer enters through a forest. The piece links into the work on show in EDGE, but I do not want to spoil the surprise! Again I have used chemical darkroom techniques to produce the work which has a pinhole camera starting point and combines this with screen printing and ceramics.
This print will be exhibited at The Mill
2. What challenges (if any) did you face in realising this work?
Working with experimental processes always poses challenges! This is the most exciting part of the journey as the unexpected is often the most relevant to the work. Working in the darkroom allows me to have a free flowing thought process, which I often feel sticks when working in a purely digital way. I feel that I work best when combining processes and part of the challenge for this work was producing digital negatives to print chemically.

3. What do you like about E17 and why? Is there anything you would change about the area?

I love that there is a thriving, pro-active artist’s community which is always looking to improve the borough. The close of the Changing Room Gallery in Lloyd Park has left a large gap for artists. I know that Harmony Hall has launched a gallery and this has provided a platform for showing work; but the location of The Changing Room was very important. I look forward to the rebuild being completed and hope to show there again.

4. Who and/or what inspires you?

Like all artists I find inspiration in daily life. This Art Trail I have been out and loose over the weekend for the first time! The decision to have open studios over one rather than two weekends is the best decision I made! I found true inspiration visiting other artists in their studios as well as viewing finished work in more formal settings. This has sparked a new photographic project and I now plan to photograph the creative community in Waltham Forest at work from now until the next Art Trail- if you would like to participate please email me at

5. What advice would you give to aspiring artists?

If you have not shown your work to the public the E17 Art Trail is a fantastic place to start as it is totally inclusive. The trail goers are very open minded and enjoy all kinds of work! I have participated since 2006 and always ask visitors to my studio for recommendations –the answers often influence my own trail.

Find out more about Rachel I'Anson by looking at her website,

No comments: