07767846475 was a mixed-media exhibition featuring the work of eight student artists, organised by second year student Oscar Gilbert. As suggested by the unusual title, anchoring the show was the notion of communication, with the exhibition aiming to provide a platform for the artists to express themselves to their audience.
Immediately on the left hung a series of paintings entitled ‘a circular controlled chaotic composition’ by Tobi Onafeko. The intricate geometry presented the perfection of a circle encompassing seemingly disordered lines within, thus creating a tension between chaos and control. These were positioned alongside digital prints by Seb Gentry. Using photographs he has taken and then heavily distorting and editing them, Seb generates fantastical and vibrant imagery.
Across the gallery are two four-part series by photographer Dan Hotz. One of these depicted the crowds gathered in Hyde Park to celebrate 420. His usage of black and white created a unity between the people in the foreground and the high-rise buildings of London in the back, with the rising smoke blurring the divide between the two.
The most eye-catching collection was that of Wami Aluko. Aluko, motivated by the lack of BME representation, has produced a vibrant series ‘ADE’, which in Yoruba means ‘crown’. Photographing black models, she celebrates those who the mainstream too often forgets.
Kome Eleyae displayed his vibrant emerging style. He paints his heroes and friends in bold and exciting colour. The commanding usage of acrylic paint gives character to his subjects enabling him to capture the personality of stars like Kanye and Kendrick.
Whilst Nika Webster’s ink drawings did not immediately catch the eye, they were perhaps the most charming works of the exhibition, with Edinburgh streets illustrated as though they were set in foreign cultural landscapes.
Kit Marfleet is also inspired by location, capturing on video manmade structures in areas important to him. On two old-fashioned televisions, the varied length of clips invited the audience to pay more attention to structures they would otherwise pass by.
The exhibition was not solely two dimensional, as Oscar Gilbert made use of floor space: a teddy bear, face down on a partly broken tiled floor, a zip open down its back, with miniature grip seal bags bursting out of its back. Confused? Maybe you were supposed to be. The usage of everyday objects grounds his art and enables Oscar to speak about the human experience with no barriers.
The randomness of media and theme ought to have been jarring for visitors – and indeed it was. However the impact of this was not entirely a negative one. Instead, the evident variation and contrast gave this bold and experimental exhibition a unique charm, which visitors will do well to experience in such rich abundance elsewhere.
Dundas Street Gallery
Image credit: Jay Kaposi