Advantage Exhibition, Site Gallery, Sheffield 2012 20 Paul Floyd Blake image_2724

Paradigm Shift, V&A Museum of Childhood, London 2012 Image taken during filming of 'Paradigm Shift'- image Paul Floyd Blake. Copyright 2010

Interfering With Play, Berwick Gymnasium Fellowship, Berwick 2009 10.'Mare Liberum' (Photo taken alongside filmimg)J.Minsky Copyright 2009

Jason Minsky was born in London in 1968. He studied 3D Design at Manchester Polytechnic from 1989-1992 followed by an MA in Ceramics and Glass at the Royal College of Art from 1997-1999. His practice combines performance, photography, installation, design, crafts, events and interventions. The work is sourced from a range of references, including visual art, advertising, literature, music, television, sport and comedy.

 

Described as making interventionist art, Minsky’s work seems to tap into familiar/everyday practices or routines to reveal a fresh and alternative way of looking at these. His work acts as a critical commentary on the ordinary and yet bizarre character of everyday life. This commentary is filtered through an artistic practice focused on the exploration of ideas through a variety of media, with a particular attention being on how and through which medium an idea can be best expressed.

 

According to the artist the absurd and mundane collide together on a daily basis. As we go about our daily rituals, work and leisure mix.

 

His work carries with it a sense of realness and familiarity, through the types of topics it addresses, the commentary it makes and the ways in which this is communicated. Minsky sees sport as an effective and available means of communication and a language that most people can easily relate to and understand. In much of his work he appropriates sport as a common vocabulary, using and messing it up for his own means. Minsky uses things like sport and humour to set up and create dialogues in his work and there is always a refreshing, open-ended and limitless quality to all of his pieces. His work attempts to create debate and poses critical questions on different levels. Through his work the artist likes to play with audience expectations and the roles of artist and audience to make the audience members just as involved in the work as him, both physically and conceptually.

 

Essentially, Minsky’s work can be seen as setting up a type of see-saw, his pieces being a tipping-point with the viewer given the opportunity to decide which way it goes.

 

There is a lot of playfulness and humour to Minsky’s work but this doesn’t mean that this is the only level on which it can be understood. Citing the influences of artists Maurizio Cattelan, Mark Wallinger and Martin Creed it is difficult to read Minsky’s work as fitting into any clear category. Even though the communication of a particular idea/concept is the starting point of his work, the process and skill involved in making the work and the visual appearance of the piece is just as important. For the artist, the process and skill behind making the work must be believable. Like consumerist objects in a shop or magazine advertisement, the artist’s use and choice of materials are a means of seduction.

 

Jason is currently working on installing his exhibition ‘Interfering with Play’ at Berwick Gymnasium. He has been on a fellowship in Berwick since Oct 09. (The Berwick Gymnasium Fellowship is run by English Heritage). Jason completed his residency at Leeds Rugby Foundation, as Artist in Residence 2007 – 2008, and was artist in residence at Greenroom, Manchester 2006 – 2007. He is also working on a residency as part of the Storey Gallery’s INSIDE OUT commission in Lancaster. In 2004 he was winner of the Crosby Homes Art Prize at Manchester Art Gallery. He has exhibited work both nationally and internationally and has work in private collections around the world.

 

Text by Lisa Beauchamp.

 

Lisa Beauchamp is a freelance writer living in Manchester and has graduated from the University of Manchester with an MA in Art History and Visual Studies.



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