Sparked by the recent closure of The Art House, a cafe and events space just off Guildhall Square, and dwindling funding for creative activity at both a local and national level, Vacant Spaces displays three former grassroots or community-focused art spaces in Southampton that I used to work and volunteer at: Solent Showcase Gallery, the Alfred Arms (formerly ZEST studios), and K6 Gallery (inside two red telephone boxes on Castle Way). The artwork employs techniques inspired by lenticular imagery to evoke the experience of viewing these abandoned or repurposed spaces and wistfully half-remembering the lively, joyous, and creative events that took place there.
Vacant Spaces was exhibited as part of Material Remains, the second exhibition by ZING, (the Zest Inclusive Group) a new network for visual artists in Southampton, run by ZEST Collective. The exhibition was inside two shipping containers in Guildhall Square in Southampton and drew on themes of archaeology and uncovering former histories or artefacts.
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