Tenant of Culture, the anonym for Dutch artist Hendrickje Schimmel, realises an ambitious new site-specific installation for Camden Art Centre, her largest work to-date.
The artist’s point of departure begins in the archives of the gallery, where she uncovered reference to the largely unrecognised mass labour of women in the laundry industry, in 19th Century Britain.
The exhibition draws on and extends the artist’s long-standing exploration of consumer culture and the vast and problematic waste accumulated via the fashion industry. Repurposing discarded garments and accessories into new sculptural forms – alongside a voracious exploration of material possibilities – fabrics are bleached, boiled, dyed, twisted, torn and meticulously reassembled. The resulting works nod to former relics simultaneously desirable and monstrous, a reminder of the fickle cycle of trends and fashion, and the exploitative and often invisible economies of supply and demand.
Tenant of Culture is the third recipient of the Camden Art Centre Emerging Artist Prize at Frieze.
Installation view of Tenant of Culture, Soft Acid at Camden Art Centre, 2022. Photo: Rob Harris