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Platform Graduate Award 2018 – Focus on Abbie Schug

12th Nov 2018

We spoke to Abbie Schug, a recent graduate from the University of Northampton. Abbie was nominated for the Platform Graduate Award by MK Gallery. She is one of five shortlisted artists.

“A digital image does not exist. The image can be seen, and it is there, yet it is not. A digital image’s paradoxical ontology cannot share our corporeal reality until it is translated into material being.

“Embracing the digital as a subject for painterly investigation resulted in a series of paintings studying digital screens displaying anonymous portrait photographs. With aesthetic influence from photographer, Man Ray, the Sabatier effect (solarisation) can be achieved by viewing a screen from a ‘wrong’ perspective; the absent corporeality within the non-real is grounded with the juxtaposed coexistence of physical dust upon the surface of the screen. Further exploring the dialog between analogue and digital mediums, whilst beginning a conversation between the physical and metaphysical – through the act of painting. An image presented on a screen is forever untouchable, and unattainable, within a tangible means – this level of denial introduces the key notion of the boundary.

“It has been an invaluable experience working with the Platform team at CVAN South East and I must thank them for their ongoing support. It was an honour to work with Simon Wright from MK Gallery – being selected from my degree show gave me the confidence I needed to trust in my work and develop as an artist. It has been an incredible beginning to my career.

“My practice is now shifting from representing reality to translating it. I have recently begun my MA Fine Art at the University of Northampton; my postgraduate work sees the continuation of the investigation into the translation of digital data. However, exchanging the anonymous portraits for cropped images of Renaissance paintings and photographs of myself to further unfold my investigation into corporeality, ambiguity and absence within representation – questioning what we can trust to be reality.”

Image: After IMG_8923, Abbie Schug, 2018. Courtesy the Artist.


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