Performance: Saturday 9th June, 3pm, artist talk/ Q&A from 4pm
Where: Testing Grounds: 1 City Rd, Southbank, Melbourne
With: Kay Abude (photography and clothing), Daniel Letizi (barber)
Exhibition: 1-17th June 2018, open 10am-6pm Wednesday - Saturday
UNIFORM YEAR.ALTERNATE PRACTICE is an installation of photographs and garments that document how an artist’s life can be an artwork. Uniform Year is a 12-month-long performance in which artist Klara Kelvy wears The Uniform every day of the year. The exhibition comprises of four sets of photographs taken in collaboration with artist Kay Abude, a performance on the 9th of June, and the detritus from the performance. The performance will be the final photo-shoot, made public, the final act of documenting Uniform Year and a public demonstration of Abude and Kelvy’s collaborative process.
In essence, Uniform Year is an experiment activated by the daily wearing of The Uniform. The quarterly outdoor photo-shoots by Abude and Kelvy document the passing of time and change in seasons through the selection of clothing and quality of the natural lighting. The colour of The Uniform and the print on the back of a wild woman are symbols to remind Kelvy daily of the most important attitudes in her approach to her practice and life.
Originally dyed International Klein Blue, the colour of The Uniform references Klein’s and Matisse's use of blue in their abstract images of female nudes. By using this colour to cover the active body of a performance artist (who also happens to be a woman) Kelvy explodes the possibilities of the blue woman from passive subject to active creator. Attitude one: the blue woman is active body, creator. The second attitude Kelvy must remember is that of the wild woman: a medieval image Kelvy has appropriated from a tapestry. The Wild Woman is connected to her environment and possesses almost magic intuition. Attitude two: connection to (urban) environment (physical and social), and following her intuition. The Uniform bypasses in part the economic constrictions of art practice, redirecting the time, money and energy spent on clothing and appearance into art production. In addition the body of Kelvy in public space becomes a viable mode to show her work, and the most authentic way for the viewer to experience the artwork.
The daily act of dressing becomes an engagement with practice by the artist, a reminder of the attitudes that will help her. The rhythms of routine and commuting become a public viewing for onlookers. The creative process, the duration, and the performance are one simple action. Work and life are not in opposition, competing for energy and attention, but are integrated into one action, rhythm, choice, and process. Come and see the results of this year-long experiment.