Accordion Time, Unfolding: A Pandemic Archive, 2021
The London Calling Collective
On view- February 12, 2021
Mixed media installation
Curated by Alexandra Rutsch Brock and Patricia Miranda
Artists of the London Calling Collective: Alexandra Rutsch Brock, Patricia Fabricant, Ellen Hackl Fagan, Katherine Jackson, Patricia Miranda, Josette Urso, Jo Yarrington
Recalling the long history of women artist collectives that endures today, the London Calling Collective was born from seven loosely associated artists who traveled to London in 2019. When pandemic lock-down came to NYC this inadvertent group of women solidified their connection through Whatsapp and Zoom. A bond of friendship grew over dozens of messages each day and two Zoom meetings a week, resulting in an extraordinary archive on WhatsApp totaling 25,564 posts over 3,783 pages. Eight hundred of these pages paper the walls at Ursa Gallery, intimate conversations including info advice, anxieties, about the pandemic and the world; shared meals, recipes, books, films, artists, exhibitions, art opportunities, the view out the window, nightly sunsets, politics, protests and actions, first gatherings and personal stories. Original work from each artist dots the "wallpaper" throughout the space, reflecting the contrapuntal dialogue between artist, artwork and text.
To add to the pandemic dialogue, the Collective designed a lockdown art project in the form of small accordion-fold books that could fit easily into NYC mailboxes and be sent through the postal service. Each book made a stop at each artist’s home, the final covers completed by the last hands to receive them. The accordion form reflects a complex conversation of time, as it compresses and unfurls, folds and unfolds, refracts and accumulates, parts in a single inextricable whole. The London Calling Collective responded to the challenges of the day by building deep friendships and a chosen family.
Patricia Miranda, co-curator