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Phoebe Davies Preview: Thursday 20 February 2020. RSVP.

Commissioned by Site Gallery, the exhibition will include the premiere of new work in film, installation and sound, drawing from her ongoing research into contact based (femxle) sports, athletic methodologies, training and rehabilitation.

The exhibition explores tactility, training and the recovery of athletes engaged in contact sports. Based on research with coaches, athletes and medics, this new body of work by Phoebe Davies looks at the physicality and personal narratives of occupying communal and competitive spaces.

The exhibition takes its points of departure from Davies’ ongoing recovery from a ligament rupture whilst playing basketball parallel to her work with a group of teenage female wrestlers, training in a local club on the outskirts of Oslo. A new moving image work documents day-to-day routines at the club, alongside combative and compassionate exchanges. Accompanying the film are a multichannel soundscape and installation employing sports aesthetics, agility drills, plays and structures. This expansive sound work considers the limits of stamina, rest and physical and mental exhaustion.

Phoebe Davies often finds herself referencing and exploring collaborative models of working across different social and cultural sectors, be that strategies from methods of organic farming, feminist organising or speculative fiction. For the last year, a key focus of her practice has been working within community sports settings, researching athletic methodologies, coaching and rehabilitation.

The exhibition will be accompanied by an expansive public programme of talks, workshops and screenings to introduce people to working with sound, advocate for and introduce women to the benefits of contact-based sports, host discussions around barriers to sports access and connect with live performance in the gallery.

This body of work began during an international residency programme at Praksis and has been supported by The Arts Council, Jerwood Arts, PRS Foundation, OCA Norway, Dana Høegh and Gerflor.

Press Release – Phoebe Davies

About Phoebe Davies

Phoebe Davies is a Welsh artist and researcher based at Somerset House Studios, London. Her practice investigates how people perceive their social framework, often working with and in response to individuals and communities, generating work through collaboration, collective action and DIT (Do It Together) strategies.

Her outcomes are often project dependent, including constructed social spaces, live performances, video, audio and print works. Through her work Davies often finds herself referencing and exploring collaborative models of working across different social and cultural sectors, drawing on methodologies from feminisms, organic farming and athleticism.

Recent projects have led her to work with sex educators, secondary school students, elderly care home residents, sports teams and DJs as well as art spaces and institutions, including Portland Institute of Contemporary Art (OR, USA), Tate Modern (London), Wellcome Collection (London), Chapter Arts Centre (Cardiff), steirischer herbst (Graz), Kunstnernes Hus (Oslo) and British Council Connect ZA (Johannesburg). In 2015 she was awarded the British Council’s Social Practice Fellowship for the International Cultural Exchange USA Program in partnership with Portland State University.

She currently co-facilitates two research groups, Synaptic Island, a London-based womxn and non-binary sound collective and Art is Action, a UK-based social practice research group.

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