James Fuller at South Parade / London

James Fuller / Perfect Living

May 6 – June 12, 2021

South Parade
Enclave 9, 50 Resolution Way
London, SE8 4AL

Photo credit: Corey Bartle Sanderson

Fuller’s practice, possessing a rich material palette, combines traditional craft and mass production. The domestic and industrial worlds are fused together through many hours of research and development; experimental processes and collaborations. Intuitive gestures initiate a series of procedures, and the materials that he samples, cuts or crushes are combined to form objects that contain an unassertive eloquence. The exhibition provides us with a window into Fuller’s studio practice. A process or system developed for one task, for example rotational moulding, is redeployed and repurposed for another. Minimising waste and loss in the production of an object is now a matter of urgency. 

At South Parade, Fuller presents new work made within the last year: freestanding sculpture, furniture and wall-based reliefs. The triptych Perfect Living contains a large central panel flanked by two smaller ones, suspended slightly from the wall. At first glance, the thermally sprayed zinc plates, held in place with a textile composite found in spring mattresses, appears to present a code. On further inspection, and from oblique angles and depending on the light, dancers and cherubs come in an out of focus. The patterns and imagery that infiltrate the exhibition represent instructions from 1970/80’s embroidery magazines found by the artist. 

 Split Tyre Lounger questions our expectations of ordinary function and combines the familiar (comfortable seating) with the unfamiliar (tyre chippings) to provoke novel sensory perceptions. The two parts of the lounger are designed in such a way that they either fit comfortably together or break apart; perhaps depending on social distancing measures at a given time. Placed elsewhere in the gallery are freestanding wax sculptures which could be sewn by hand, machine made or both at the same time. The concern for pattern and texture is also demonstrated by a textile wall panel, with an indented mantra There is no comfort to be found in these soft surfaces. The most recently created object is A finger tracing the lines of a thumb, a fragile cast of synthetic leather cuttings evoking the body and skin, which like text, materials and processes, flow through the exhibition. 

James Fuller (b. 1988) lives and works between London and Athens, Greece. He graduated from the Royal College of Art (London) in 2018. Recent exhibitions include Under the Volcano, Brooke Benington (Mexico City, 2020), An Arrangement in Two Halves, a Bench in Two Parts, with Marco Miehling, William Benington Gallery (London, 2019) and Further Images, White Crypt (London 2018). He was the recipient of the Kenneth Armitage Post-graduate Sculpture Prize and the Tiffany’s x Outset studiomakers award (both 2018). The production of artworks in the exhibition was supported by Arts Council England.