a Project space
25 calvin st, spitalfields, london e1 6nw
tel/ fax: 020 7247 5227
www.coverup.org.uk

Bait
Landscape and natural History Series

Cover Up project space presented five exhibitions of contemporary art engaged with natural history and landscape. Each exhibition took place over three to six days and included artists and curators from Europe and America. These events were not a comprehensive survey of their theme, but rather a sequence of pipette samples from a broad territory of activity. This series was directed by Finlay Taylor and invited curators and gallerists.

Bait
21st - 22nd June 2003

Charlie Murphy

presented by Danielle Arnaud Contemporary Art

“..this Tickling Art, be the Sauce and Relish to the most Luxurious Entertainments...’

‘Bait’ is a selection recent video work which frames a whole secret world of unspoken sexuality and pleasure in the rituals and customs of rural and domestic life.

Murphy’s interest in language reveals an intimate history and observation of rural life , charting everyday bucolic activities in a series of studies of thehandling, stroking, rubbing, milking and harnessing of animal assets.

‘Soften’ investigates the old poaching technique of ‘tickling trout’, a hypnotic predation by seduction in which the dynamics and fantasies of our power over nature are coaxed from under the river bank.

‘Turn’ plunges deep into a writhing mass of swirling, climbing eels, a mesmerising Medusa of unspoken yearning and profusion.

‘Joy’ is an orgyof apparently spontaneous jumping for joy that transforms the anglers gaze into a humorous meditation on anthropomorphism.

As part of a larger body of work ‘The Art of Tickling Trout and Other Sensual Pleasures’, these three intense vignettes offer a pertinent and suggestive comment upon the romanticisation of the bucolic, filling our vision with powerful and memorable images that map out the relationship of sex with the handling and controlling of animals.

Image: Charlie Murphy