Atholhu is the newest contemporary art exhibition on show at the WORKSHOP Gallery, a 16sqm platform for emerging local and international artists.
The exhibition represents the first duel show by artists CathérineLommée and Thomas I’Anson, both of whom find inspiration in shifting frameworks and fluidity, two elements reflected in the motion of Beirut’s mental and physical landscape.
The first point of departure to create this exhibition was the use of Polynesian navigation guides known as stick charts. These objects traditionally made from curved and straight midribs of coconut fronds representing the winds, wave patterns and ocean swells between two or more islands reflect in both artists’ practices, the relationship between object and mental image. Studied and internalized these charts never left land; serving as a guide, not as a map – an object to crystallize schemata in the mind’s eye.
Atholhu, the exhibition’s title comes from the etymological root for the word atoll; the coral structures formed around an extinct volcanic island that grow upward over thousands of years at the same rate its island base falls beneath the sea. The process of autopoiesis causing these ring-like islands to develop reflects the concerns and processes of both of the artists – a mode of growth which occurs in response to shifting frameworks.
The exhibition opened on Wednesday, September 3 in the presence of the artists and remains on show until October 24.