Kirsty Buchanan / Juno Calypso / Hannah Ford
/ Nicola Frimpong / Katerina Jebb

Curated by Sarah Kathryn Cleaver

2 September – 2 October 2016

Gallery Open: Friday - Sunday 12-6pm

With its horror-filled connotations of madness and perversity on the one hand, and its elevated status as a tool for creative genius on the other, the concept of solitude has long fascinated society in general and the creative community in particular. ‘One can never be alone enough to write,’ noted Susan Sontag (paraphrasing Kafka) in her diary. Great minds from French artist and dedicated diarist Eugène Delacroix and scientist and philosopher Blaise Pascal to Russian filmmaker Andrei Tarkovsky have extolled the benefits of learning to enjoy your own company. In 1929 Virginia Woolf argued for the necessity of both a literal and figural space for women writers within a literary tradition dominated by men. Contrastingly, the fear of isolation and ‘ending up alone’, played on in films from The Shining (1980) to Bridget Jones’ Diary (2001), contributes to a growing movement of monophobia resulting in a need for constant connectivity. The School of Life now teaches a course on How to be Alone, exploring both the anxiety surrounding and rewards resulting from a more solitary life.

Isolation Chamber Vacation is an exhibition of artist’s responses to the subject of ‘aloneness’ and exploration of cultural representations of solitude. The work of five artists; Juno Calypso, Hannah Ford, Kirsty Buchanan, Nicola Frimpong and Katerina Jebb, will be shown alongside contexualising objects and ephemera from curator Sarah’s research into the theme. These objects include artists’ books, as well as letters, back-issues of magazines and a library of ‘recommended reading’.

Further examination into this pertinent topic will be provided with a series of talks and film screenings, which will take place at intervals throughout the duration of the exhibition and a special issue of art fanzine Arty, guest edited by Sarah Kathryn Cleaver.

Isolation Chamber Vacation was shortlisted for the Artquest Workweek Prize 2016


Sunday 4 September 3pm
Artists Kirsty Buchanan, Juno Calypso and Hannah Ford and curator Sarah Kathryn Cleaver discuss the ways that solitude influences their practice, aloneness as a feminist issue and their references for the exhibition. The discussion will be followed by a screening of Wim Wenders’ Paris, Texas (1984).

Sunday 11 September 3pm
Mary Wild on horror and Isolation
Film researcher and creator of the Projections public lecture series Mary Wild delivers a talk on cinematic representations of aloneness, focussing on the horror genre. The talk will be followed by a screening of Roman Polanski’s Repulsion (1965).
Free - reserve your place here

Sunday 18 September 3pm
Sarah Stein Lubrano on aloneness and creativity.
School of Life researcher Sarah Stein Lubrano will be sharing her expertise on the role of solitude in the lives and work of artists, and the ways in which being alone came to be regarded as a key element of creativity. Followed by a screening of Jessica Yu’s In The Realms of The Unreal (2004).
Free - reserve your place here

Sunday 25 September 3pm
Anna Stothard in conversation with Sarah Kathryn Cleaver.
Novelist and travel writer Anna Stothard and curator Sarah Kathryn Cleaver will discuss the ideas of aloneness that populate the writer’s work, travelling alone, and the transient nature of happiness in relationships. Followed by a screening of Lynne Ramsay’s Morvern Callar (2002).
Free - reserve your place here

Thursday 29 September 6-9pm
launch for Arty 37: Isolation Chamber Vacation (guest edited by Sarah Kathryn Cleaver)
Opening night of Artlicks Weekend - all welcome

Sunday 2 October, 3pm
Isolation Chamber Vacation curator talk
Sarah Kathryn Cleaver in conversation with Transition Gallery director Cathy Lomax.
An Artlicks Weekend event - all welcome



Guardian Guide
Hackney Citizen
Royal Academy of Arts
Lets Make Lots of Monet Blog



Arty 37: Isolation Chamber Vacation
avialble from the Transition Gallery Shop,
Arty stockists
and online