Husband and wife artistic duo, Rob and Nick Carter have launched a new central London exhibition and studio space RNat5A. The inaugural exhibition, Yoga Photograms, features eight life-size works from the pair’s recent series of photogram portraits exploring a range of traditional Sanskrit yoga postures. The meditative series investigates both the experiential nature of achieving each position as well as the technical transformation of the visual image. The pair are continually expanding the boundaries of their fine art practice, swinging between new cutting edge digital technologies and traditional analogue mediums, including neon light drawings, luminograms, moving image, 3D scanning and naturalistic sculpture – each allow the viewer to absorb and reinterpret compelling subject matter in an exciting and innovative way. We managed to grab a few moments with Ron and Nick during their hectic schedule to ask about their new space, yoga and how it fits complements their existing art practice.
1 What is RN5A ?
RNat5A is our new second studio with a unique space open to the public 5 days a week; Tuesday to Saturday 10am to 6pm. We will use RNat5A as a separate viewing and project space showing 4-6 different bodies of our work each year.
2 Space – are you interested in the changing answers to the questions: what is space? what is my space? what is personal space? Virtual, Augmented, Real, Digital etc
As our lives become busier and busier the idea of mental and physical space becomes paramount. It is a fantastic opportunity at RNat5A to create our own unique atelier to show our work and engage with the public. With our Transforming series of work we are trying to create a space that slows the viewer down to look and relook and be rewarded for prolonged viewing. Our attention spans in the modern world are becoming shorter and we want to address this issue and engage with our audience. Most of our digital animated paintings are 2.5 hour looped films that require time and space from the viewer to be appreciated.
3 As technology speeds up life in so many ways do you think practices such as Yoga be come even more important for life?
Yoga is very important and relevant in today’s society. The more frenetic everyday life becomes the more we need periods of calm and mindfulness.
4 What is a photogram?
A photogram is a unique photograph made without the use of a camera. No camera, no lens and no negative, just light and light sensitive paper. Each artwork is unique made by placing the subject directly onto photographic paper and exposing it to light.
All Yoga Photograms have been made in complete darkness with a model lying nude in a Yoga position directly onto a large piece of photographic paper. This process is as pure as photography can be, made by a single flash of light onto light sensitive paper. With Yoga Photograms, we liked the notion that the Yoga mat was being substituted for the photographic paper and could create different hues of colour through the varying levels of contact.
The nature of photograms has also given the works an ethereal and transient quality.
5 Is your art practice now changing your life or is the work a reflection of your changing life?
Our work is a reflection of our lives and our growing interest in cutting edge technology as well as traditional analogue photographic processes and techniques.
We enjoy working with new technologies and most recently have employed 3D printing and Computer Generated Imagery in our work.
6 As you became famous/successful wasn’t it kind of obvious you’d get into YOGA?
Nicky has been practising yoga since the age of 18. The busier life gets the more important personal head space becomes and practices such as yoga become vital especially living in such a frenetic city like London.
7 How will you balance the time you spend in your different spaces?
We’re still in the transitional stage but we imagine spending 1-2 days at RNat5A and 3-4 days in our current Acton studio where we can focus purely on creation with no interruption.
As a husband and wife team and artistic duo, Rob and Nick have been collaborating for over 20 years, with their work housed in collections at: The Hague; Victoria & Albert Museum; Mauritshuis; Frans Hals Museum; David Roberts Foundation; Städel Museum; Foundation Custodia, as well as being the only living artists to show a work at the Frick Museum, New York. The Carters have also executed a number of significant public and corporate commissions throughout London, including works for Cardinal Place in Victoria, 200 Aldersgate, 23 Savile Row and Great Ormond Street Hospital.
RNat5A will provide a dynamic studio and viewing area for the artistic duo, with a two-storey exhibition space open to the public year-round. The nature of the multi-purpose space will provide a unique link between the artists’ practice and a central London home for discussing and viewing new work and processes. Exclusive previews and artist-led programming will be showcased every twelve weeks, encouraging an open dialogue across creative communities. The new space will be in addition to Rob and Nick’s existing studio in Acton and formal representation through Ben Brown Fine Arts.
RNat5A Bathurst Street, London W2 2SD is now open to the public, Tuesday – Saturday, 10 am – 6pm.