Andy Slater is an artist based in Dundee, whose recent work captures his vision of the hidden world of signs and public spaces.
Andy recounted that on a trip to Australia, he was wandering through some scrubland and came across a circular clearing with a small traffic island in the centre of this with a ‘keep left’ sign and a tree fern growing next to it. (A picture of this site, taken from his notebook, is on this page).
What made the encounter so unusual for him was that this space with its sign had really no relevance to where he was in the semi-outback. There were no access roads leading there, no clues of human purpose beyond this clearing to make sense of this space.
This encounter proved to be a trigger for the artist’s more recent works to explore the subversion of public spaces and the mysteries of the familiar. Slater questions the systems and syntax of how we encounter our environment and, in doing so, he breaks down the conventions of road markings, signage and traffic islands, populating them with organic, exotic forms, cellular patterned images: A diffuse textural wall of energy and colour, in which we are transported somewhere else and towards a sense of the extraordinary.
Abstraction, pattern, collage, plastics and embroidery are integral elements of Andy Slater’s practice. In 2013 in Newcastle University he completed with a distinction his masters studies in Future Landscape Imaginaries, making new paintings and vacuum formed plastic works that examine systems, protocol, and the production of space. In 2008 he undertook a residency in New York where he completed new large-scale paintings, screenprints and embroideries based on the representations of well-known female figures in history such as Eve (with Adam), Delilah (with Samson) and Salome. In his solo show at the Star and Shadow in Newcastle, Since I Got My iPod Everything is Filmic and Beautiful (May-June 2007) he exhibited paintings drawing upon the Greek myths of Flora, Chloris and Zephyr, amongst other works which made reference to famous landscape paintings from Monet to Bruegel. In addition to his studio work, Andy has worked in a technical or artistic capacity for venues such as BALTIC and projects including Platform North East, Star Board Home (Newcastle), and The Embassy (Edinburgh) and spent a period of time working at the Venice Biennial (Zenomap Project, Scottish Pavilion, 2003).
In addition to his MA from Newcastle University, Andy has a 1st Class Hons. degree in Fine Art from the University of Dundee and has undertaken research residencies at San Martino de Scale, Sicily, on board the MS. Stubnitz, at The Banff Centre, Canada and at PointB, New York..