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Rokeby is pleased to be presenting the first solo exhibition in London by Glasgow based Canadian born artist Erica Eyres.
Through drawing and film Erica Eyres invites the viewer into an uneasy world of disenchanted youth and beyond. Fascinated by the absurd and how we, as humans, react when faced with situations which generate conflicting emotions, the artist creates characters from astute observations of both daily life and the manufactured social realm of the 21st Century; obtaining material from conflicting sources such as television, film and internet, history, current events and the everyday and ordinary.
Eyres is fascinated by awkwardness in individuals her examinations of which are documented in drawings - the lines of which emulate the subject matter - or are bought to life by the artist in film. Often her characters lives are exposed as disturbingly troubled, and the viewer is confronted with figures that deserve both our pity and distaste. Faced with the absurd lives of her characters and the conflicting emotions generated by them, the viewer is forced into an uncomfortable position where inconsistent emotions are required to be addressed. Eyres carefully and skillfully balances the abject with the empathetic.
Though Erica Eyres only graduated from Glasgow School of Art in 2004, having completed her undergraduate studies at the University of Manitoba in 2002, her work suggests an understanding of the world way beyond her years. Eyres forces you to acknowledge the less than wholesome aspects of the contemporary world, to look at the underbelly of society and to acknowledge the bleak facts of life in the 21st Century. These acknowledgements are thankfully addressed by the artist with a humour, which along with her dexterity as an actor and a draughtsman and her delight in the absurd, elevates each scene.
Destiny Green, takes the form of a documentary about the life of a beauty queen whose fictional story is inspired by both Jonbenet Ramsey the 6-year-old beauty pageant princess murdered in 1996 and Jocelyne Wildenstein the Manhatten socialite who has undergone millions of dollars worth of plastic surgery to transform her once normal human face into the face of a cat. The film traces the child's history through interviews with friends and professional relations, discussing her rise to fame, her disappearance and shocking reappearance after having her face surgically removed.
Erica Eyres graduated from the MFA at Glasgow School of Art in 2004, she was selected for newcontemporaries in 2005 and has exhibited her work in Canada, China, Iceland and Denmark as well as having exhibited extensively throughout Great Britain. Her work will be included in a group show at Jack Henley gallery, San Francisco later this year. She has recently been awarded a Dewar Arts Award.