London-based Canadian artist Allison Katz showcased her first institutional solo show in the UK in Nottingham Contemporary’s Art Gallery. The exhibition, Artery, is a playful take on identity and expression, paired with a unique sense of humour and curiosity.
The weird but wonderful pieces present various scenarios, ranging from allegorical caves, bodily perspectives and an almost near replica of a lift. Placed next to the working lift, I wonder how many people walked straight into it!
A collection of the paintings, from inside a gaping mouth, stood out from the rest of the exhibition, in an impressive and engaging manner. This delightfully peculiar perspective is distinctive, memorable and adds a touch of surrealism to each piece. Katz’s skills as an artist are impressive, managing to walk the line between an excellent pairing of hyperrealism and surrealism.
All of her works feature a play on perspective. Katz said, “I want to emphasise the non-order of things, from inside to out”, which is certainly reflected within her art. Another interesting play is that arteries are inside us, and ‘art’ is inside the word artery, but also, as Katz explains, “the arterial is used to describe major highways, subterranean cabling, branching rail networks and winding river systems”, which Katz features as landscapes within a few pieces.
Allison Katz’s artworks work delightfully as a collection and possess a unique ability to be exhibited well in any space.
Although I am disappointed by Nottingham Contemporary’s lack of titles and dates for each piece of art and would have liked to have known the name of each work upon walking around the exhibition, Katz’s work is so inquisitive, innovative, and entirely unique that it makes up for it. The art stands for itself and deserves a 5-star rating regardless.