Property Guardian

Flat Time House, London. 
June/ July 2015.

An exhibition generated whilst living and working in Flat Time House: a home, gallery and archive. This work developed out of an investigation into the role of artists within a community, and the way in which the living conditions of artists have been politicised through the current culture of property speculation, and property guardianship, made not from a critical distance, but rather from a conflicted and implicated position.

The objects are playful and poetic reconfigurations of domestic detritus through homespun processes including pewter casts of objects – keys, coins and frozen foods – found around the house and made using Flat Time House’s barbecue as a home foundry or mint. Other works are made from objects left behind by previous artist-in-residence – a hotel key card, a book and comb – and hoarded ceramic ornaments – novelty mugs, jugs, teapots, and piggy banks – that have been smashed and reassembled into new and unlikely forms. Channelling childhood experimentation, Frost has shrunken food packaging for domesticated animals which he then petrified and preserved within resin tablets. Finally there is a sand sculpture of a brick barbecue in the garden containing a pet deterrent spray, degrading over the duration of the exhibition.

This collection of objects is intended be seen in its entirety and so specific titles have been eschewed. This is further emphasised by the blacking out of all the gallery windows, heightening the private/public dichotomy that is at the root of this work.

Alongside Property Guardian runs the Peckham Art Press Release Archive, an archive of paper press releases from exhibitions, events and projects in Peckham since 2000. During the exhibition Alex Frost will be taking submissions to this archive. This archive incorporates items from the John Latham Archive, in particular those referencing the Bellenden Renewal Project – to which Latham contributed the book sculpture that punctures the Face of the Flat Time House.