I make collages that may only fully and completely exist in the minds-eye of the observer. These montages are held loosely in place, folded temporarily or built-up in assemblage, installation, film, print or poster. I work with appropriated photographs and with non-places that feel overlooked, abandoned and lost, commenting on issues relating to identity, power, control and desire, and exploring how vulnerable fixed ideas are to subversion. I collect fragments from different sources and reconstruct them into something new, connecting disparate ideas and moments to produce ephemeral possibilities containing a hint of truth.
Recent work uses film to create collages about the liminal, barren, non-space of the train journey, our relationship to it and how this can shift as a result of making art. It exploits the points where the technology of the camera fails, unable to frame a shot or keep things correctly in perspective. The final film offers fragments of different places - dislocated moments trapped in time - one event interrupting or haunting another, constructing a vision of a world poised between beauty and dystopia.
Another current series of work focuses on how the image of woman is portrayed in the mass media, using a variety of non-traditional construction methods to make the final collages. Each one pairs a 1930’s photographic postcard with a ‘twin’ in a similar posture sourced from a contemporary fashion magazine, constructing a hybrid ‘Other’ picture of womanhood. Superficially the material selected offers the passive perfection of theatrical stills, but it resists my patriarchally-based gaze to produce a final image that’s never intact, blocking possession of womanly perfection, denying pleasure, and re-siting the experience of viewing in castration and anxiety.
CV & Education
2013: Master of Arts in Fine Art (distinction), University of the Arts London, Wimbledon
2010: BA (hons) in Fine Art, University for the Creative Arts, Canterbury
Prior: Claire had a successful career in business before deciding to re-train as an artist.
Claire is a founder member and Secretary for Making Art Work, an artist's collective based in Maidstone, Kent.
Past group exhibitions:
2014 Response, Making Art Work, Maidstone Museum, Maidstone
2014 Repetition, part of RECURSIVE, No Format Gallery, London
2014 The Other Side of Here, 51zero's Film and Arts Festival, Pop Creative Space, Chatham
2014 Zeitgeist Summer Exhibition 2014, Zeitgeist Arts Projects, London
2014 Open Projector Night, Making Art Work, Maidstone
2014 On Tap, Making Art Work, Brewery Tap Gallery, Folkestone
2014 Timeslip, Fringe Arts Bath Festival, FaB 2, Bath
2014 Tension, Sevenoaks Kaleidoscope Gallery
2014 Share and exchange exhibition, Zeitgeist Arts Projects, London
2013 S.I.T.E., CCW Alumni Show 2013, Chelsea Collage of Arts, London
2013 Object Abuse, Spinach, London
2013 SHIFT, Making Art Work, Maidstone
2013 In the Shadow of Her Gaze, MA fine art graduation show, University of the Arts London
2013 Maidinski project, Making Art Work, Maidstone
2013 MA pop-up exhibition, University of the Arts London
2013 Share and exchange exhibition, Zeitgeist Arts Projects, London
2012 Red, Making Art Work, Maidstone
2012 Text, Making Art Work, Maidstone
2012 Shoes, Cultivate Gallery, London
2012 E17 Art Trail, London
2012 All at Sea, Pie Factory, Margate
2012 Memoria Technica, Nunnery Gallery, London
2011 I's, Shes, Hers, Ours, The Gallery, London
2010 Battle Contemporary Fine Art Exhibition, Battle
2010 Neither Use nor Ornament, Herbert Read Gallery, Canterbury
2010 Graduation Show, University for the Creative Arts, Canterbury
2014 Stitched Time, by Clare Smith, Limbo, Margate
2013 Shortlisted for the Clifford Chance Sculpture Prize 2014