Joanna Langford

The Landless

8 August 2009 - 8 November 2009

Joanna Langford is an artist who gets a distinct pleasure from plotting out her work, scoring a rich range of second-hand materials and then reformulating them into richly poetic series of installations. The Landless is an elaborate new piece that Langford has created specifically for this gallery. In it, the artist has used a cluster of rudimentary clotheshorses to form the architectural support for series labyrinthine stairwells, towers and lighting rigs. 

This miniature city-like scape has a wondrous speculative quality to it -  it has all the potential of an architectural proposition without being tied down by consent reports, financial accountability or the ‘client’s’aesthetic whims. In this sense The Landless is more akin to a perpetually growing urban space than a utopian or model world. It shows all the wear and tear of its construction and no idealized viewpoint is suggested for the audience.

This precarious platform is also the foundation for a floating garden made from artificial sushi garnishes, which subtly rotate at various intervals and weave out across the skeletal mainframe. This rambling greenbelt speaks as much of urban renewal as it does of its fall; it is a green-belt phenomenon which has lost its way and been allowed to regenerate.

Langford’s installation is a bold assertion of the ephemeral – playful in its applied use of  light-weight materials, this brave new world is also one that can easily be packed down and reassembled in an endless array of orientations. It is a work of lyrical confidence, which does not demand any single reading or response from the viewer. 

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