Hot Rocks: Artists Explore The Obsessiveness Of Mineral Collectors And Geologists

Leah Luten

Superstition is a four-walled mineral cabinet consisting of artists that all depict geological rocks such as crystals, gemstones, or Geodes. The exhibition, curated by Matt Gee explores the obsessiveness of the geologist or mineral collector which has parallels to that of the artist, being an accumulator of curious objects.

Rocks can seduce us with their alluring textures and their varying rarity

Rocks can seduce us with their alluring textures, and their varying rarity produces a market for them. They can be purchased when departing through a museum gift shop or listed on eBay after being a found object when travelling.

Once a rock is acquired, does this bring good or bad luck to our futures, or heal what has happened in the past? Much like the interpretation of artworks, the pseudoscience attached to these rocks allows people to look for varying meaning. They are treated as an omen to attribute our faults, successes, healing and self-worth, ascribed to an inanimate object that is produced not by humans but by the natural world.

Leah Luten and Jane Ashby both portray the post-transition metal Bismuth by reproducing its crystal-like structure with an illustrative approach; with Ashby using her slick screen-printing method whereas Luten uses her heavily detailed and labour intensive digital painting style.

Cy Bernheim has adopted an unorthodox approach to the traditional printmaking technique etching, resulting in embossing paper with tactile textures and effects reminiscent of lava.
Olivia Pratt also works with the printing press to screen print the mineral Chalcocite and uses watercolours to carefully illustrate various minerals. Gemstones act as a societal status symbol and are the most polished and manipulated of the forms in this exhibition, depicted with finite yet flowing painterly quality in Paula MacArthur large-scale work.

Artists Exhibiting: Cy Bernheim, Jane Ashby, Leah Luten, Olivia Pratt, Paula MacArthur

SUPERSTITION – PV 6-9PM Fri 13th April – Curated by Matt Gee Opens on 13th April 6-9pm then Saturday 14th 12-5pm … and it’s at Project Space Wapping – The Rum Factory, Bow Arts, Unit 4 Pennington Street Warehouse, Pennington Street, London E1W 2BD

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