Swann's work encompasses painting, collage, photography, installation and writing. Recurrent themes include power relationships, the mask, time, systems of belief, and confrontations with 'the other.' Recent work has included a large number of works on paper. Painted in black acrylic on white, the paintings are quickly rendered to give only the necessary amount of information for an image which should be familiar and 'everyday' but nonetheless ambiguous - creating a juxtaposition of the known and the unknown. Larger scale installations and composite pieces, such as 2.5Milliarden Sekunden (2012), Idiotville (2011), Exit Strategies (2009), No Survivors (2007), and Event (2004), begin with a fixed starting point from which they morph outwards, taking the form of a stream of consciousness piece that examines the spaces between the real and the imaginary, fact and fiction; where the connections between individual images or lines of text become in themselves the basis for the continuation of the piece. These works tend towards an 'encyclopedic' conception, where all forms, styles, and cultural histories might overlap and play against one another, creating a piece with multiple dependencies and outcomes. Rather than being an illustration of a given situation, the work attempts to create a situation of itself, into which the viewer enters at any given point and traces the relationships to curate a form of edited outcome. These works mirror the nature of 'knowledge' within an information age, where any given thesis might find its place among the multitude of information such that nothing can go unquestioned. If a super computer now calculates at a rate equivalent to the entirety of mankind making 2.5 million calculations each per second, then what form of alternative universe might it thereby construct, and what possible combination of animal, plant, god, might go untried?
CV & Education
2012 - 2,5Milliarden Sekunden, Raum 58, Munich, Germany
2007 - La Rosa dei Venti, Rachmaninoff's, London, UK
2012 - ‘If you look like your passport picture, you are too ill to travel, Sheffield Institute of Arts, Sheffield, UK
2012 - Jahresgaben 2012, Kunstverein Munich, Munich, Germany
2011 - Emergency5, Aspex Gallery, Portsmouth, UK
2006 - East International, Norwich Gallery, Norwich, UK