Alex Davenport

University: London College of Communication

Graduation: 2013

Genre: Performance

Websitewww.alexdavenport.co.uk

Artist Statement: Previously a dancer, my work explores the choreographic elements of the body as well as every day banality and the tension it creates. Although I have a background in performance and my work incorporates performative elements, my practice is driven by the ideas of photography and its history as a form of documentation. 

  Act 1  (video still) - from  A Lamentation in Three Acts  2013 (10.14 min, looped). HD Video.

Act 1 (video still) - from A Lamentation in Three Acts 2013 (10.14 min, looped). HD Video.

  Act 3  (video still) - from  A Lamentation in Three Acts  2013 (10.14 min, looped). HD Video.

Act 3 (video still) - from A Lamentation in Three Acts 2013 (10.14 min, looped). HD Video.

What are some standout moments from your time at university? I met a great network of friends/artists who I am still in touch with and collaborate with now. Also getting selected for the Source Photography Graduate Issue in 2013 and seeing my work in print was a big highlight for me. 

Which photographic genre do you consider your work to fall into, and what themes do you find yourself exploring? My work is interested in photography as performance and its ability to deceive and control. I suppose the biggest themes in my work are failure, repetition and endurance. 

Who or what visually and theoretically inspires your work? Artists from the Judson Dance Theater, particularly Yvonne Rainer, heavily inspire me both visually and theoretically. Other influences include Bruce Nauman, Keith Arnatt, Helena Almedia & Àngels Ribé. 

Your work has been featured in a number of locations since you graduated, how have you gone about marketing your work for exhibitions and online publications? I spend a lot of time researching/applying for competitions and festivals, there are so many opportunities out there, it can be quite overwhelming. I made a book last year entitled Exercises I-III and the great thing about that was being able to get it into numerous places at one time. In the summer I had the book in Belfast, London & Athens and I didn’t have to worry about expensive shipping & framing costs (as it’s relatively small). Also working with Nick (from Kiosk Books) was so great, he was really supportive of the book and took it all over the place to various festivals. 

Social media is also very important I think. I recently did an Instagram takeover for TjejLand and was able to showcase my work to a completely new audience, which I am really grateful for. It also really challenged me to curate my own work for an online platform. 

  Exercise I  - from  Exercises I-III  2014-2015 (21x29.7cm). Risograph Printed Zine.

Exercise I - from Exercises I-III 2014-2015 (21x29.7cm). Risograph Printed Zine.

Dance and movement is a very prominent subject in your work, why has this continued to play such a role in your imagery? I was training as a dancer up until the age of 18, so my work is naturally interested in those themes. As my work has developed it has become not so much just about movement, but also its limitations and how this experience affects the body. 

  Exercise I  - from  Exercises I-III  2014-2015 (21x29.7cm). Risograph Printed Zine.

Exercise I - from Exercises I-III 2014-2015 (21x29.7cm). Risograph Printed Zine.

What work did you make for your final project at university? My final year work was entitled A Lamentation in Three Acts and consisted of 3 large C-Type Prints displayed in between 2 video performance pieces. The work is centered around my costumes through the years as a dancer and is an in-depth exploration into the journey of the childhood performer and the consequential hardships of adulthood loss. The work acts as a lamentation, but also a form of catharsis where the childhood costumes of a younger self become disembodied substitutes for the female body. 

  Barre Study I  - 2015 (42.59.4cm). Digital C-Type.

Barre Study I - 2015 (42.59.4cm). Digital C-Type.

What are you working on at the moment? I am in the early stages of a new body of work, which is currently entitled A Study for Mime. I’m also hoping to undertake an MA at the end of this year.