Artist Statement

Josh Wright (b.1993, High Wycombe) and Guillaume Vandame (b. 1991, New York), collectively known as Wright & Vandame, live and work in London. Central to their practice, the artists explore the possibilities of collaboration and audience engagement through lively participatory art, performance, photography, video, sculpture and installation. In particular the artists are especially interested in interrogating questions of authorship and ownership, areas of expertise, and the role of artist. Their focus is working with people, moving beyond traditional associations of art as something purely aesthetic or decorative. The potential of art to empower the self, ownership of space, and the various roles an individual can inhabit from spectator to subject and participant are equally important. 

For their first solo exhibition for fig-2 at the Institute of Contemporary Arts, London in 2015, they transformed the ICA Studio into an active gym space with free exercise classes taught by invited trainers and artists. Recent solo and group exhibitions include "All of Us Will Be Gone" at Gazelli Art House, London, "What Happens to Us" curated by Amy McDonnell and Marsha Bradfield at Wimbledon Space, London, and "Gym, Let's Work it Out" curated by Kit Hammonds at Chi-Wen Gallery, Taipei. They have been selected as recipients for the Taking Part Residency at Photofusion, London between 2016 and 2018.

Their practice is often about facilitating social situations whereby participants can have an active role in the outcome of the work - whether in an exercise class or sharing a meal. These situations are always free and the artists aim to work with a range of different audiences which can coexist within one community. In this way, their art is grounded in utopian aspirations and an earnest desire to create meaningful social change by working with diverse individuals in different ways. 

 

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Jeff, Lycra and wood, Tools Series, 2015. Courtesy of Wright & Vandame.

Jeff, Lycra and wood, Tools Series, 2015. Courtesy of Wright & Vandame.