Shards and Seams (2018) was the culmination of a 6~month residency with Husk Creative Space, responding to the heritage of the building, formerly the Danish Seamen’s Mission. The show comprised a series of site~specific interventions and installations, centring around a historic, disused organ above the gallery space, and its anticipated journey to restoration.
Anticipation fanned an array of gold and white threads from the remaining front pipes, and missing ‘ghost pipes’, of Husk’s disused organ. For the opening night, the instrument was reconnected for its first performance in over 30 years, in collaboration with local organ specialist, Ian Bell, and contemporary composers, Rosie Clements and Reuben Penny. Read more about The Organ Project.
Remember illuminated letters from an inconspicuous Danish war memorial, one of few remaining clues to the centre’s history, and from where it takes its name (the word ‘Husk’ means ‘Remember’ in Danish). Alongside, a framed text commemorated eight ‘unwitting collaborators’, each involved in the story of Husk, in reference to a series of hidden Re~formations to find within the building.
Throughout the residency, broken crockery was retrieved from Husk’s café, the pieces used to run a series of ‘kintsugi’ mending workshops for local people. Fixed cups, plates, saucers and teapots were recirculated for customers during the exhibition, expanding themes of repair and restoration into the gallery’s adjacent spaces.
The exhibition centrepiece, Shards and Seams has been re~exhibited and reimagined for other venues, including for Material Transcendence (2018) at Worlds Ends Studios, Everything Must Change (2018) at Heath Street Church, and the 2021 Chaiya Art Awards at the OXO Gallery, for which it won a Judges Choice Award.
Exhibition documentation by Will Alcock and Jon Bilbrough.
“Shards and Seams was an invitation, a space to quietly reflect and an opportunity to really see and appreciate the small details that we miss when we’re rushing through life. Instead of throwing something out the moment it breaks, it was a quiet reminder to see potential, not just the broken places. To see what something or someone could become.”