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Artist Holly Revell at Sh! Hoxton

Artist Holly Revell at Sh! Hoxton - Sh! Women's Store
April is always an exciting month at Sh!
Spring is in the air, folks are getting friskier and at Sh! Hoxton we have a new stunning exhibition by Holly Revell. I’ve managed to steal a few moments of the fabulous Holly’s time to find out more about the artist and this month’s exhibition.
Hi Holly, thanks so much for joining us on the Sh! blog. I had the cheeky pleasure of taking a sneaky peek at your exhibition ‘DARKROOM in pictures’ at Sh! Hoxton earlier this week and I must say I *love* your work!
Tell us a little bit about yourself
Hi I’m Holly; I’ve been exhibiting artworks and developing my photographic installations on the avant-garde/cabaret/queer/club scene in London for the past 2 years. I have been part of Act Art, Night of the Senses, David Hoyle’s Lives at the Royal Vauxhall Tavern and the Barbican Alternative Christmas Bazaar to name a few…
I’m an insatiable fag-hag and devastatingly proud of it!
Describe yourself in 3 words.
Energetic, Innovative, Cheeky
What inspired you to start creating photographic art?
Since studying fine art, I have always been interested in photo-theory and have used photography a lot in past works, which were more conceptual installations. I guess I like its accessibility as well as its seductive qualities… I am always most drawn to photography when I visit exhibitions.
Oh and the growing desire just to make pictures of sexy boys!
The idea to make my live ‘DARKROOM’ installations came from teaching light-painting to A level students – when the lights went off the atmosphere in the studio changed dramatically and became quite theatrical – I saw the potential for audiences both passive and participatory!
How would you describe your style?
Audience participation has always been a significant aspect to my work. I enjoy working live making the whole process of the making of the image/thing the art, working in front of the camera with my subject(s) makes it quite performative.
My photographs are often compared to painting using chiaroscuro, they are intimate, sensuous and evocative. They are somewhere in-between painting and photography.
Your exhibition at Sh! is based on your DARKROOM images. Tell us a bit more about DARKROOM.
‘DARKROOM’ ; a site specific photographic installation presents photography as current, a live experience as opposed to a document of the past; it plays upon the language of photography and flirts with the concept of nightclub darkrooms. Looking back towards tradition in photography, the work concentrates on slowing down the photographic process, pulling away from the ‘click double click’ culture it has become. Using modern digital equipment, long exposures and light painting techniques in a darkened space, participants are invited to make a single image, contrasting historical elements of photography with contemporary practices.
What inspires you as a photographic artist?
I love the whole concept of what photography is, its ever changing sociological role and what it can become… also the way it brings me closer to people I admire or desire!
Who inspires you as a photographic artist?
I love classics such as Robert Mapplethorpe, Nan Goldin and Larry Clark as well as newer names such as Toyin Ibidapo and her book ‘Cult of Boys’ I’d love to make a book like that!
I’m also becoming more and more interested in renaissance painting, the old masters and dutch painting…
What are you working on at the moment?
I am planning my next DARKROOM installation for the erotic awards ball which will be horsey themed (I need a rocking horse if anybody has 1 I can borrow!!)
I also have a workshop this Saturday at the Green Carnation Soho which will allow ticket buyers to learn more about my DARKROOM pictures and then become a part of one!
Any words of advice for aspiring artists?
Be original and chase your dreams – today’s generation can do what it wants if it really wants it but that makes it harder too as there’s so much more competition…! Network and be nice to people!
‘DARKROOM in Pictures’ will be exhibiting at Sh! Hoxton throughout April, then onto Sh! Portobello in May.
Meet Holly at her Private View on Wednesday 4th April, 6-8pm at Sh! Hoxton.
Sh! Hoxton, 57 Hoxton Square, London N1 6PB
Tel: 020 7613 5458

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