After studying graphic design at Huddersfield University and working in the design industry for almost 10 years, Alice went on to study visual communication at the RCA. The experiences learnt over the years taught her the power context and community has on designing work and creating art. More recently her work has shifted into this community realm, working with organisations such as the Westway Trust to make work that is accessible to the communities and contexts they are displayed in.
Living close to the area, I discovered the elevated concrete motorway named the Westway whilst on an aimless ramble. I was immediately drawn to the monolithic pillars and echoing soundscape of the road from below the structure. The area which particularly interested me was the area near Stable Way, a section of sand which upon closer research I believe used to be a riding school. I gravitated towards the discarded objects there which were a peculiar array of photographs, greetings cards, jigsaw puzzles and hundreds of discarded spray painting lids discarded by the local street artists. I found a stark contrast between this area, North Kensington and it's far more affluent neighbour, South Kensington.
The story of class seemed to deepen when I did more research. I was saddened but unsurprised to find that the building of the Westway resulted in the demolition of an area already neglected by the government. However, I was inspired by the positive action of the community which made way for groups like the Republic of Frestonia and the Westway Trust. Instead of leaving the area to be turned into a car park, the community converted many of the underpass bays into areas for creation and play.
Whilst observing the objects under the Westway, I wanted to capture them in some way without being too intrusive and disruptive to their context. I found one way of doing this was through the form of cyanotype. I made many of the cyanotypes on site so as to not remove the objects from their environment.
The idea of taking the objects I have found and placing them in a white room for a show didn't seem to make sense to me. I felt part of their charm was the absurdity of where they were placed. To transport some of the atmosphere of the Westway underpass to an exhibition space, I constructed a concrete box using sand moulds to house the objects in.