Cunningham

Ackroyd & Harvey
Curated by Greg McCartney

15 September - 16 October

Void gallery presented the first public artwork in Northern Ireland by internationally renowned artists Ackroyd and Harvey. Cunningham was the second Artist’s Garden from the Void Sites program for 2013. The Cunningham building at Ebrington was been chosen as the site for a temporary art installation where the facade has been planted and grown with seedling grass.

In the 23 years that they have worked together this is the 5th work where they have grown the façade of the building. The artist’s covered the front façade of the building with a layer of clay into which millions of germinating grass seeds were planted. Clay, seed, water and light are deployed by the artists to explore the boundary between growth and decay in the urban space and by skilfully manipulating grass's properties and connotations, they articulate and actualize notions of ephemerality, landscape, and memory. The familiarity of living grass as a material and their artistic practice of ‘growing’ enacts powerful transformations. It can encourage and create new feelings for place, fresh imaginings and in the process temporarily reshapes monumental buildings.

Ackroyd & Harvey www.ackroydandharvey.com have collaborated together since 1990; sculpture, photography, architecture, ecology and biology are some of the disciplines that intersect in their time-based work, revealing an intrinsic bias towards process and event and frequently reflecting environmental and scientific concerns. They are internationally acclaimed for their large-scale architectural interventions and for their work making complex photosynthetic photographs in seedling grass utilizing the light-sensitivity of the pigment chlorophyll. In the public space their artwork often makes explicit connections with socio-political ecologies by highlighting the temporal nature of processes of growth and decay in found sites of architectural interest. To date, their work has been exhibited within contemporary art galleries, museums, and public spaces worldwide.