Photo: Olivia Punnett in Sheffield , East Midlands

Olivia Punnett

Artist, Arts administrator, PR manager, Lecturer / academic, Researcher

Refractions distort the light-image; around the peripheries of shapes sparks of indigo, white and red flicker, breaking the uncertain projected image.  A photograph is printed, then printed again, emphasising the texture of photogravure, then installed behind tinted or patterned glass, which moves the image once more from its original source.   The various methods of projection fracture the image, while each technology imparts a particular aura, producing diverse narratives.  Images and means of projection sometimes combine drips and marks of household paint, the surface of wallpaper, household mirrors or panels of wood leant against a wall. Technology, trace, and error produce estrangements, while capturing layers of identities and rhythms of the past.


Memory and time are recurrent themes, for, as  Steinbeck writes in The Grapes of Wrath ‘how will we know it’s us without our past?’

Yet memory is constructed, and escapes account relentlessly.  The use of ephemeral materials and unfixed temporal arrangements articulates this in non-hierarchical constellations, combining with the architecture of the place of exhibition. An element of installation or arrangement is introduced into the existing space, embedding the image therein and anchoring an otherwise ephemeral work.  The recesses of concrete, the rise and fall of architrave or skirting board, the indentations in the floor inflect the work. The adjustments to the common features of  place induce a reflection of a place or a memory, as something that is incorporated but resists recall.

I use print, household paint, dust, found or reclaimed materials such as light fittings, stud walling or vent covers, woods, slides and slide projectors, & photographic images to communicate the experience and concerns of the work. But more and more this is stripped back to light projection and the lens.


The blurring or washed over effect contained in the effect of passing through different layers of imperfect glass, plastic or water lenses are imposed upon imagery. Light through water, and the effects of the disembodied image, always one step removed from our reach.


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Location Sheffield , East Midlands
Activities Practice-based research, Art historical research, Residencies, Community arts, Public art, Private commissions, Visual arts consultancy, Technical installation
Artforms / type of project Consultancy, Project, Installation, Intervention, Printmaking