Caroline Achaintre

London, United Kingdom
APT London
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  • Turner Contemporary puts making and materiality centre stage in a new exhibition. Entangled: Threads & Making is a major exhibition of sculpture, installation, tapestry, textiles and jewellery from the early 20th century to the present day.

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  • “The Resemblance Is All in the Eye of the Beholder” is on view at Galería Agustina Ferreyra in San Juan, Puerto Rico, through Saturday, October 8.

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  • This first UK solo presentation and survey of Betty Woodman’s last 15 years of activity is a timely show given the current resurgence in ceramics by contemporary artists working with clay, including London-based Emma Hart, Caroline Achaintre, and organisations like Troy Town Art Pottery and The Grantchester Pottery, just to name a few.

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  • BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art, Gateshead, UK The French/German, London-based artist Caroline Achaintre has been exploring the peculiar psychol

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  • 10 Exhibitions Opening This Week

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  • The very idea that the plastic arts could provide a surface for human expression stands on the belief that an artist’s physical actions include elements both conscious and unconscious, and therefore expressive.

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  • In the middle of Battersea Park, where humans once hunted woolly mammoths on frozen boglands, Pump House Gallery has become a kind of prehistoric encampment. During The First Humans, the gallery has been filled with primitive-looking artefacts and also primeval geological features. But far from being ancient, everything has been made very recently by artists.

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  • Zarina Bhimji's 2002 film Out Of The Blue is a lush elegy to a paradise gone horribly awry. As a child, Bhimji was among

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  • Frieze London, which runs October 15–19, has announced the line-up for its 2014 Sculpture Park. The park, which includes both contemporary work and

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  • The Contemporary Art Society has unveiled further lots that are to be auctioned at their Annual Fundraising Gala on 11 March 2014. These include an editioned work from 2013 Turner Prize winner Laure Prouvost, created especially for the gala, as well as a photographic work from 2012 Turner Prize winner Elizabeth Price.

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  • As one might expect from Charles Saatchi, this exhibition begins with a funny, immediate work. Ansel Krut's painting, of an upturned saucepan

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  • The exhibition at Project Arts Centre Whitewashing the Moon, remembers the irrelevant yet striven-for aesthetic transformation from an artificial satellite to the more dramatic illusion of a fake moon.

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Some aspect of the uncanny recurs in the work of Caroline Achaintre, an interest clearly displayed in her homespun, hand-tufted, woolen rugs. Achaintre has made a number of such works that began by recycling the extraordinarily unoriginal, contemporary imagery of the heavy metal music industry – clowns, skulls and masks - into soft furnishings.
Achaintre’s recent works, perhaps, in some way are closer to the paintings of Willem de Kooning, Paul Klee or even Peter Lanyon. Caroline Achaintre’s woolen works are a mass of contradictions; at once grotesque and seductive, alien and familiar, derivative and inspired, crafted and copied.

The woolen works initially began as finely tempered watercolor and print drawings. These would later translate into large-scale schematics used to map out guidelines for the tufting process in which wool is pushed through a wide woven canvas and leaving the wool hanging at precise lengths throughout the fabric’s surface.
Achaintre’s more recent tufted works have developed away from the tight rectangles of the captive drawn page in which they started - now taking irregular, angular shapes as their boundary and choosing also to overhang such restrictions. As the tufted works have grown more intricate the drawing stage has moved from paper directly on to the canvas and is now continued within the tufting process itself. This removal of the need to transpose the fluid markings of watercolor into the language of a more exacting tufting gun has allowed Achaintre to regain fluidity within color and the final image.
In recent years, Achaintre has adopted the medium of clay; the categorical boundaries and nature of these new objects are yet to be defined. It is probably this lack of definition together with the ambiguous and at times amorphous nature of Achaintre’s work and the subjects she depicts, that associates it to Freud’s notion of the uncanny, an instance where something can be familiar, yet foreign at the same time, resulting in an uncomfortably strange feeling. Their construction from fired and glazed paper clay allows them a delicate and almost precarious feeling as they drape from their soft leather companions. They are also familiar to us as objects that could be found in museum halls, where we – the viewers, border the objects of antiquity.

Born in France and raised in Germany, Caroline Achaintre trained as a blacksmith before travelling to London to study at Chelsea School of Art & Design and Goldsmiths College.She recently exhibited at Newspeak: British Art Now, part of the Saatchi Gallery, London; and ‘Das Vertraute Unvertraute’, Württembergischer Kunstverein, Stuttgart.In 2012, she participated in group exhibitions at The Courthauld Institute, London, and The Museum of Modern Art, Paris.

The artist lives and works in London.

For additional information about this artist, visit Mutual Art