From the hub of Portsmouth’s diverse and diligent art scene, Sensorial/Censorial combines the creative forces of 10 local artists to reveal an exciting and varied display of work that aims to challenge, engage and enthrall. The project is the result of two years worth of study on the Fine Art Masters course at Portsmouth University, and a great many more years of previous research and experimentation. Exhibiting at a total of five venues across Portsmouth (details below), the group have selected a range of work spanning a broad spectrum of artistic disciplines, ranging from the traditional methods of painting and photography, to the more contemporary practices of installation art and new digital media. Themes are also varied, encompassing an eclectic mix of the beautiful, the humourous, the reflective and the downright bizarre!
Each venue provides an alternative backdrop to the last, chosen to appeal to a diverse audience - taking into account that not all spectators are able or indeed feel inclined to visit the traditional white-cube gallery setting, and may feel more at ease viewing art in a less intense, more sociable environment. The exhibition at Portsmouth’s Guildhall is also aimed at branching out to the visually impaired, with electronic devises providing a pre-recorded description by the artist of their individual works available for those who are unable to appreciate works through visual means. This feature is similar to the headsets available at many major exhibitions, aimed at bestowing the viewer with a more elaborate insight into content and context of exhibits, and helping to offer spectators a more intimate, inclusive experience. This supports the notion that viewing art, especially within recent years, has evolved to become more of a multi-sensory experience as opposed to merely a visual one.
Sensorial/Censorial, is a title that is somewhat conflicting in nature: the term sensorial invoking the notion of a sensory encounter, and censorial implying the loss or confiscation of such experience. As well as implying the shows objective concerning the blind and partially sighted, this is a mild reference to the recent and sadly ongoing cuts made throughout the creative sector as a consequence of the economic climate, both on a national scale and within local Arts institutes. With the cultural industries suffering the loss of Government funding, and what little money spared being scorned and resented by conservative authorities, it would appear that the sensory art experience on a public scale is indeed being censored through lack of funds, resources and patronage.
A huge thank you to all the venues and sponsors.