SANKEY | WALKER is a collaborative exhibition featuring new and combined works by artists Katherine Sankey and Corban Walker.
This exciting exhibition at The Dock presents new individual and combined works by the artists Katherine Sankey and Corban Walker. Concentrating on their separate and joint approaches to sculpture across the three galleries, the exhibition gives the viewer an insight into the profound connections in their work. This approach to exhibition making is a point of departure for both artists.
Sankey seeks to challenge assumptions about the boundaries of what it is to be human and what constitutes a ‘natural’ object. The work holds a grimy, distorted mirror to ‘the real’. In its uncanny representations of embodied experience, it is about dis-ease, disturbance, anxiety, illness, and repair. In Gallery One, for example, Sankey’s work in video, overlayers a drawing by Walker. Her paintings are applied directly to the gallery wall and are combined with ceramic installations. Emerging close to the darkness of this room’s formal black fireplace, is the work “Chair-root”, a coupling of wood, polished brass fixtures and a destabilised chair, a work which is precarious, dystopian, and beautifully crafted. This bone-like sculpture is organic, smooth, and calloused, patched, pinned and held by metal supports. Initially this work, by Sankey, seems antithetical in its visual language to Walker’s work, however the piece could be read as a key convergence point between the artists.
Contrasting his experience with other people’s belief of what is considered a ‘correct proportion and measure’ through a minimalist approach, Walker's aim is to introduce new ideas to that conversation. He conveys a perception of scale, known as “corbanscale”. Walker, from a height of 129 centimetres, brings a re-evaluation of scale to a wider audience in an installation or sculpture. Navigating a “conditioned” site from a conditioned stature (Achondroplasia). Walker combines an organisation of rules with his physical orientation. The mathematical rules analyse such variables in condensed formations, while deliberately stretching the capacity of assemblage and one’s perspective. Walker’s sculptures are assembled from either glass or acrylic, saturated with light refraction off multiple edges, the works are icy-blue and raw grey. They are precise, cool, translucent, and modular – drawing the view to consider their sharp perspectival angles. In Gallery Two, new ceramic works by Walker include over seventy “Pigeons”, alluding to medical care and hospitalisation. Throughout the exhibition there are hints of connection, overlay and commonality between the artists. As with the most successful of partnerships, the ambition is that common and different languages enhance meaning and the reading of these artists works in a new context.
Photos by Paul McCarty and David Smith