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Print (MA)

Sarah Vines

Sarah Vines is a British artist born and living in Hertfordshire.

She began her creative studies at Oxford Brookes University, where she gained her Foundation Diploma in Art and Design. She graduated with a BA Illustration and Animation at Kingston University in 2017, and then completed her MA in Print at the Royal College of Art in 2023.

Sarah has exhibited across London:

MORE, OXO Gallery London, 2017

Illustration Afloat, Barge Fiodra, 2018

Dark Yellow Dot Presents: Printed, Genesis Cinema, 2020

Two Fold, Southwark Park Gallery, 2023

Sarah has been featured in a collection of publications, including BETWEEN the LINES, Issue 2, 2020, The Old Bureau - In The Kitchen, Issue 2, 2020, and Art Hole Magazine, Issue 8, 2021.

Sarah will be showing her work as part of the forthcoming RCA Exhibition at the Truman Brewery, July 2023.

Sarah standing in front of a lake, wearing her classic rainbow patterned kimono jacket and smiling towards the bottom left.

On a base level, an object is purely an arrangement of materials for a functional or aesthetic use. It may begin as this, however as soon as it is owned, it develops an empathetic, symbiotic relationship with its owner which waxes and wanes over time. The objects a person brings with them, and the domestic rituals performed with them, is often what makes their space feel like home.

My work combines drawing, traditional techniques and screen print to examine the relationship people have with their spaces and their chosen objects. I see the home as a site of performance, and seek to question and capture the intricacies of domestic life, the rituals of home, and the balance between control and comfort often present in these spaces. I use these inspirations to create portraits and still life scenes.

My work is bright and celebratory, with a focus on colour and composition. I question depth, with an aim to strike a balance of uncanny perspective. I enjoy depicting still life and portraiture with a contemporary outlook, with the aim of presenting a relatable, 'lived in' experience. The practice is informed by artists such as David Hockney, Lisa Brice and Tim Mara, and I am drawn to narrative storytelling as seen in traditional Dutch Masters as well as Georgian and Regency portraiture.

A screenprint of a still life with oranges and vessels on a teal patterned cloth against a bright blue background.
Screenprint on Fenner Omnia Natural, 320gsm, 70x40cm

Slowly It Is Becoming Our Home, Our Ritual Place

Still Life is a subject with a long history, but one that for hundreds of years was considered low art. Originally still life studies were devices for training artists, then they became mass produced for newly wealthy merchants, who wanted them to display as evidence of their success. This is where the trope of a cut lemon appeared, as lemons were expensive, much like the pineapple motif you see in a lot of Victorian architecture.

I approached these themes with the intent of presenting a modern, more accessible interpretation of classical still life. I replaced traditional objects with their contemporary versions. I chose easy-peel oranges instead of knife cut lemons, and included the pomegranate sticker as reminder that it all came from the supermarket.

A detail showing the gloss layer on the print.

Medium:

10 layer Screenprint on Fenner Omnia White, 320gsm

Size:

90cm x 60cm
A portrait of a couple sitting on a sofa in a colourful abstracted space, surrounded by their objects.
Flora + LuFlora + Lu, Screenprint on Fenner Omnia Natural, 320gsm. 80x60cm, cut to edge.
A portrait of a woman sitting alone in front of a surface strewn with objects, including her mother's ashes.
Rin, Screenprint on Fenner Omnia Natural, 320gsm. 60x80cm, cut to edge.
A portrait of a couple sitting on a sofa in a colourful abstracted space, surrounded by their objects.
Lina + Sam, Screenprint on Fenner Omnia Natural, 320gsm. 80x60cm, cut to edge.

Three Spaces, Three Places: Flora + Lu, Rin, Lina + Sam

A triptych of 9 layer screenprints depicting portraits of people living in and around London. This series explores modern day 'home' from a range of living situations, exploring similarities and differences across themes of sentimentality, objects of importance, sensory stimuli, and what makes their space feel like 'home'.

I went to each subject’s residences and by their lead chose a room to depict. I drew objects that they had decorated the room with, and in some cases had gathered to present to me. I also found my own items in the room which may have been overlooked by their owners, but were clearly integral to the space and their identity. I sketched and photographed these objects and rooms as well as drawing portraits of my subjects in relaxed positions led by them.

As well as gathering visual records, I also recorded an interview with each subject. They were asked 11 simple questions about their space and home situation, and I used this to inform each print. 

Medium:

Screenprint on Fenner Omnia Natural, 320gsm

Size:

80 x 60cm, 60 x 80cm, 80 x 60cm
A top down view of the box and 4 selected cards laid out underneath
Room: A Myriorama of InteriorsPack and selected cards. Risograph on paper. Cards 10x15cm, Box 10x15x0.5cm

Room: A Myriorama of Interiors

A Myriorama is a children’s card game popularised in the 19th century. The player arranges and re-arrange cards into endless interlinking scenes, allowing them to build their own story.

I developed a scene of an impossible interior, where depth and perspective is questioned, and included uncanny elements such as a single shoe on the ground, an open umbrella, broken vases, and furniture placed in ways that don’t make sense.

This game was also made to poke fun at the way that modern interior design is often presented in magazines. To make the photos more interesting, photographers put objects in strange places, such as a large vase of flowers in the middle of the kitchen floor, or a bright green satchel that appears in the background of every shot. Not only does this add a strangely absurd element to these otherwise perfectly planned and manicured homes, it often renders the space unusable.

A myriorama card showing a mezzanine with a low lamp and lots of pictures on the walls
A myriorama card showing a fireplace with a half burned letter on the hearth. In the mirror a half open door is visible.
A myriorama card showing a hallway with an open umbrella on the ground.
A myriorama card showing a corner with a spilled bowl on the ground and a table with a picture of a fingerprint
A myriorama card showing a staircase with a rolled up carpet leaning against it. The wall has a crack in it.
A myriorama card showing a doorway which leads to a kitchen. There is an open box in the doorway and a mirror on the floor.
A myriorama card showing a chair with a spilled matchbox and a lamp which is on but is unplugged. There is a large mirror.
A myriorama card showing a doorway with a chair placed in front of it. One high heeled shoe is on the floor.
A myriorama card showing a hallway with a jug in the middle of the floor. Theere is a lit candle mounted low on the wall.
A myriorama card showing an entrance to a room with broken pots and liquid all over the floor. There is a glove in the entrance.
A myriorama card showing a door with a curtain in front of it. There is a broken mirror on the wall and an umbrella stand.
A myriorama card showing an open door with no knob. There is an open book on the floor and a stool with a basket of fruit on it.

Medium:

Risograph on Paper

Size:

10cm x 15cm x 0.5 cm

My humanity is a site of discourse.

I empower myself by choosing to make.

My work, my craft, is an act of defiance.

When I choose to use my muscles in the act of making, I am telling a story of myself.

By making work I declare my presence and my voice.

By perpetuating my craft, by focussing my thoughts and my body, by living in mindful confidence, I declare that I am a catalyst.

I declare that my acts of daily life are political.

I declare that my acts are powerful.

I declare that my movements are my expression.

I declare my space as mine.

I will peel myself open and I will savour the fruits of my labour.

I will allow the creature that is me to solidify and change.

I will open my chest and bear myself fully.

I will recognise and be empowered by my strengths and weaknesses.

I will give myself time.

I will think, I will feel, I will act.

I will be gentle.

I recognise that I am not finished - I am yet building.

I recognise and celebrate that I will never be complete.