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Artist Lise Bouissière's recycled Roller Coaster artwork opens at The Smallest Gallery In Soho

Lise Bouissière is a London-based artist and Central Saint Martins graduate who explores the poetics of space through installations and photography that highlights the use of material in creating new meaning. Her minimal and straightforward compositions often drawn on memory, a current state or the unseen, always leaving room for the viewer’s interpretation. For her new commission Roller Coaster currently on view at The Smallest Gallery in Soho, Bouissière takes London’s ever changing crane-filled cityscape as the inspiration for the monumental sculpture made from straws collected from the city’s bars, clubs, coffee shops and tea houses. The work comments on reuse, sustainability and architecture of the city of London as it continues evolving. In Lise's Run-Riot Interview she explains how sustainability, use of materials, and the London cityscape inform her work and her art practice.   

Jareh Das: Tell us how Roller Coaster is inspired by London’s cityscape?
Lise Bouissière:
London is a fabulous city which could be considered as an immense construction site. Everyone in the city lives life in the fast line and so does the cityscape. The cranes are ever so present everywhere and they form part of London’s identity reflecting its dynamism as well as pointing towards the future. It is a city that constantly reinvents itself. I like this very British term in saying that buildings are “mushrooming” because it gives a natural comparison to this phenomenon. The cranes in the skyline makes me think of giant insects and with Roller Coaster I tried to express an analogy between the natural and urban environment by creating an organic game of construction to describe the urban transformation. 

Jareh: You have been collecting straws from London’s bars, clubs, coffee shops and tea houses what inspired you use this waste product as sculptural material?
I often use wasted material for my artwork as I find it more interesting to work with what has been thrown away or leftover, rather than with new materials sold in art shops. The previous life of the material for me adds a poetic touch to the compositions. Also, art is 'technically useless', so I don’t want to use new material to generate even more waste, I want to use the waste to give it a second life. On top of this, getting things done with very little is a good challenge that pushes creativity further; also, simple materials offer the freedom to experiment and to make mistakes which is important in the creative process.

Jareh: Your artworks including Leaking Landscape and Dry Cleaning are abstract installations that emphasize material qualities. Could you describe the importance of materiality to these installations?
Materiality is a general trend in contemporary art, this trend is linked with the overproduction of objects and there is a need to go back to the basic which is the material by itself. The aesthetic trend moved from the logic frame/painting or base/sculpture towards a new tandem which is space/material. The material is not used as a support to represent an idea, it is the subject of the artwork by itself. The composition is then very free and abstract, and they offer to the viewers a wider range of interpretations. Every new material supports a new game of composition which takes months to develop. Leaking Landscape and Dry Cleaning both follow this logic, the same with Roller Coaster.

Jareh: Sustainability is a big topic in art at the present moment. How do you view your role as an artist influencing wider environmental issues and changes?
Yes, sustainability is a big topic that will become increasingly present in the arts because if nothing changes, global warming will continue to impact us more and more. For things to change, people must be reached through diverse ways and art is one of them. Art offers new visions that drives the global aesthetic trends, so it has the potential to have a big impact on people’s mind set. Creativity is key for change, and creativity is not only in art but it is also present in politics, economy, education etc… So if an art piece can help boost the creativity of people from other sectors for things to change in a good way then that would be wonderful.

Jareh: How did this collaboration with The Smallest Gallery in Soho come about and what are your views on the transformation of the area?
I often passed by The Smallest Gallery In Soho regularly and really loved the art selection on view there. I wanted to develop a project that was strong enough before approaching Philip Levine and Andreia Costa, the manager/curators of the gallery. I am very honoured to have the chance to collaborate with them and I can’t thank them enough for this opportunity. I'm also very grateful to the team of The Garage Soho who run the building, for letting me use their space and for being so kind and helpful. Soho is a thrilling place because it's like a condensed version of London, so it is very intense. It has always been a hotspot for a diverse type of alternative universe so the cultural heritage there is huge, and the story goes on.

Jareh: What’s next for you?
I will push the project of Roller Coaster further because it is a very adaptable piece, and I have been approached by an upcoming new concept store mixing art and fashion for a potential collaboration. Philip has been such a strong support at every stage of this project, and he is now introducing me to many people in the art world.

Lise Bouissière: 'Roller Coaster'
The Smallest Gallery in Soho
62 Dean Street, Soho, London, W1D 4QF
October - December 2019

Lise Bouissière

thesmallestgalleryinsoho.com | Instagram | Twitter

'Roller Coaster is curated by Philip Levine and Andreia Costa.

About the Curators:
Philip Levine

Philip has been working in the creative and cultural industries for the last decade as a producer. This has ranged from exhibitions, events, publishing, talks and creating his own unique artwork under the title ‘Headism’. He has gained a MA in Culture, Policy and Management at City, University of London. Being from London, his passion is knowing ‘who and what’ is up and coming in cultural trends and being involved within them. Read the Run-Riot interview with Philip Levine, here.
Andreia Costa
Andreia is an Associate Architect at Jamie Fobert Architects. She studied in the Faculty of Architecture at the University of Porto and practiced for 3 years in her native Portugal. Before moving to the UK Andreia decided to explore her contemporary art interest by working in Serralves Museum of Contemporary Art as an architecture and art lecturer. In 2010 she joined Jamie Fobert Architects, where she has been involved in several projects including Selfridges and Tate exhibitions.


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