Jenna Burchell on Audrey Anderson


An exhibition about the necessarily not knowable held on the day that doesn’t exist.

A solo exhibition by Audrey Anderson

Written by Jenna Burchell

Over the years of knowing Audrey, one thing I have come to realize is that anything in the world can be magic to Audrey’s eyes. I recall one particular memory of living together where there was a basil leaf sitting on the kitchen counter. Knowing Audrey I decided it must be something profound that she was contemplating. One day passed, and the leaf stayed on the counter. Two days passed, three days. After the fourth day, when this poor leaf was really looking brown and wilted, possibly even beginning the first stages of rigor mortise, I decided to ask Audrey about it. I said, Audrey, what is this leave thing about? Audrey laughed, because she had thought it was me who had left it there. But here’s the thing, right, nobody in the house dared to disturb such an unknowable artistic contemplation; at least not while Audrey was present.

Audrey has the most uncanny ability to find the magical otherness even in the most ordinary and banal of moments. Her eyes immediately lock to the periphery to witness and record what she intuitively feels. A world that happens even as we walk mindlessly, unaware, along our streets to buy samosas, or to have a cup of coffee, perhaps there is even a crow nearby. To us her artworks become like windows into a universally subconscious world, ablaze with colour, life and self-awareness.
Audrey creates art for all those strange, wistful and powerful emotions that are hard to describe because they are so universally agreed upon, and thus over looked as ordinary.

There is vitality to her process, which she never allows to become overly contrite. Often her reference images are fragments captured from a Go-Pro, strapped to a friend’s hip, capturing life at random.

When Audrey first told me about the title of her solo, I had to again ask, what did it all mean? She told me this story …

According to legend, in some 300 BC time, many a statesmen and philosopher came to offer Alexander The Great their congratulations. Alexander expected that the philosopher Diogenes would also show up and bestow his praise. But since that philosopher took not the slightest notice of Alexander, Alexander went in person to seek him out. He found him lying in the sun. Diogenes raised himself up a little when he saw so many people coming towards him, and fixed his eyes upon Alexander. Alexander greeted him and asked if there was any wish in the world that he could grant Diogenes… “Yes,” said Diogenes, ” would you stand a little less between me and the sun.”

It is said that Alexander was so struck by this, and admired so much the haughtiness and grandeur of the man who had nothing but scorn for him. he said to his followers, “But truly, if I were not Alexander, I wish I were Diogenes.” and Diogenes replied “If I wasn’t Diogenes, I would be wishing to be Diogenes too.”

Which brings us to – “Stand A Little Less Between Me And The Sun”. An exhibition about the necessarily not knowable on the day that does not exist, by Audrey Anderson.

There is vulnerability in this show here before us. Audrey not only unveils a world within a world, but has removed the reigns of judgement from herself and from the expectations of the critical, to allow herself into a deeper part of her art making. In these works we witness an artist unleashed, unafraid, and in a state of continuous flow. An artist seeking to understand what may come forth from this place that fully basks in the sun.

This is an exhibition that needn’t be dissected and pulled into components, but rather it should be experienced tacitly. We should bask in the moments and feelings that her works intuitively reveal. Feel the life between the known and unknown, between you and I, between Audrey and her canvass.

In an authentic Audrey move, she will be creating and adding artworks to her solo show every day that it is open. Why, you might ask? I suspect the answer might be: Why would you open an exhibition only to place a full stop?


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