Approved: 28.09.2013

Katya Robin


Approved: 28.09.2013

For me, making work is a way of unpicking paradoxes. I make things to show the anomalies  and ambiguities.One strand of my projects unpicks hidden disorder and multiple interpretations. Coins of little value. Fuzzy measurements. Vacuous memorials. 

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      For me, making work is a way of unpicking paradoxes. I make things to show the anomalies  and ambiguities.One strand of my projects unpicks hidden disorder and multiple interpretations. Coins of little value. Fuzzy measurements. Vacuous memorials. 

      Fundamental to my way of working is intensive research. My approach is rigorous, planned yet open to intuition. It’s grounded in the grit of life. 

      Gardening is part of my art. I made a walled garden from a derelict late Georgian industrial building and yard. It’s part of my work place, a space for thought and experiment.  Wormhole, a linked two-site installation for Art:Language:Location came from vermi-composting (using worms to make compost). For Deadhead Mix, I made a dye from flower heads.

      I’m currently working on Grave Goods. Looking at memorial vases and flowers, and colours associated with death, specifically Caput Mortuum. Separate strands that combine, overlap, work together. Rigourous. Intense. Poignant. 

      I work across a range of media but always with an investigative method and demanding technical standards. Themes and motifs which recur across my work:

      Value systems, categories
      Standard Measures – works about units of measurement
      COIN/ICON – motifs of low value currency
      Typecast – a visual reinterpretation of the library catalogue
      Queens of Art – redrawing nudie playing cards 

      Questionable Memorials
      Bucket Towers – popup memorials
      Urn – grave goods
      Charter Square Sheffield Rising – Link between Chartism and Brutalism.

      Duckrabbits – playing with the Jastrow, Gombrich, Wittgenstein Duckrabbit paradigm
      Doppelgänger – doubling, passing

      Ice Hex –  frozen pages
      Message in a Bottle –  leaflet publication as a contemporary message in a bottle
      Buckets –  and public waterworks

      Uses of Colour 
      Symbolic Acts – burning art and making ash grey paint  
      Deadhead Mix – making pigment from pruned flowers
      Grave Goods –  black plants for urns, exploring the properies Caput Mortuum.

      Construction and Destruction
      Hexopolis – project about urban hexagons
      Concrete Hopes – reflecting on Utopian Brutalist developments, and concrete grave goods, site visit to concrete factory.

      My 3D work was shortlisted for ArtLacuna Prize 2013. I was selected for PolyMath Continuing Professional Development (2015-6) based on my Hexopolis project. I was funded by Arts Council England for my COIN/COIN project (2016-18). My work has exhibited widely. One of my artist books was selected for KALIED2015, I have artist books in collections in the US, EU, and UK.

      CV & Education

      Shards (drawing), included in The Lost Diagrams of Walter Benjamin,  eds. Helen Clarke & Sharon Kivland
      Coin Icon scarves and Rag Tales, discussed in Shoddy Work, Cut Cloth publication essay by Gill Crawshaw

      COIN ICON Penny Exchange 2 year project received Arts Council England funding, and new designs installed in Penny Press machines at Museums Sheffield
      Report on Knowledge for Sharon Kivalnd's Leeds College of Art Library Intervention, and  Library Game, Chelsea School of Art Library
      Coin Icon scarves and Rag Tales selected for Shoddy, curated by Gill Crawshaw
      Message in a Bottle exhibited in Midlands Open 2016, Tarpey Gallery
      Double Con-Figuration  (collaborative artist book with Lou Hazelwood) exhibited in Unity, Yorkshire Art Space
      Message in a Bottle, Thinking About Duckrabbits, Bucket List, included The Floating Library, Minnesota, (2014-7)

      Poly-Math Continuing Professional Development
      Residency at Ruskin PopUp Museum
      A selection of 7.45 my artist’s books included in The Kippenberger Challenge exhibited at de Appel Library, Rijksakademie van beeldende kunsten Library, Pierre Kamp Lab, Jan van Eyck Academie
      Contribited to The Editions I and The Editions II

      HEXOPOLIS, project exhibition for Pages, Leeds Artist’s Book Fair 2015, The Tetley, Leeds
      Symbolic Acts (artist book)  shown in Engagement and Entrapment, curated by Diana Ali, Binyamin Gallery, Tel Aviv
      Damp Edges (textiles) shown  in The Reality of Small Differences, curated by Gill Crawshaw, Leeds

      Standard Measures 100 feet, shown at Living Numbers, Fringe Arts Bath
      Klub Kube, LoBe Gallery, Berlin

      Wormhole and Duckrabbit public interventions included in Art: Language: Location 2013, Cambridge
      Reel (3D) shortlisted for ArtLacuna Prize 2013, London, and also shown at Out of Context, Bank Street Arts,  Sheffield

      Thinking About Duckrabbits selected for KALEID2015, and  thus acquired by:
      The Metropolitan Museum of Art Thomas J Watson Library
      Joan Flasch Artists’ Book Collection
      Yale Centre for British Art
      Lafayette College
      Swarthmore College.
      Also acquired by Chelsea School of Art Library, Oxford Brookes University Library, Leeds College of Art Library.
      Typecast, shortlisted for KALEID2016
      Bucket List acquired by Oxford Brookes University Library 
      The Editions (ed. Sharon Kivland) held in The Tate Britain Library and Archive, The Tate Gallery Library and Archive,  The Tetley Leeds, and Leeds College of Art Library, Centre de livres d’artistes, France.

      Art Education
      M.A. Fine Art, Sheffield Hallam University, 2011–2014
      B.A.(Hons) Painting, St Martin’s School of Art, 1983–6