Lauren Kirkman - Surface
elevating the mundane to the realm of high art using the sparest means possible
Exhibiting for the first time in Scotland, Lauren Kirkman uses this opportunity to approach the notion of surface by examining the very ground beneath our feet. The centrepiece of the show is a huge installation of cobbled Edinburgh street which cuts across the gallery space. Designed to mirror the cobbles on the road outside, this is a potent intervention, with the effect being heightened through contrast with the Navy Blue design company's uber-modern offices which lie adjacent to it. In fact, context is central to Kirkman's work, and this piece possesses a detached, alien quality – removing the surface of the streets we tread and transferring them into a gallery space in order to unlock new psychological properties from the material. Her large rubbings, created from manhole and gaswork covers, further unlock the mystery which is latent in everyday surfaces. Kirkman uses these objects to create beautiful abstract designs which protrude from the pristine whiteness of the paper, catching the light and delicately shifting as we move around the space. These are ingenious works, elevating the mundane to the realm of high art using the sparest means possible.
The Corn Exchange Gallery, Edinburgh until September 28. Free.