The Law of Identity

Nina Jesih is from Slovenia and is currently in the midst of an MA Curatorial Practice at Bath Spa University. She has been  at 44AD artspace since September 2016 and was recently presented with the opportunity to curate 44AD artspace’s Annual Open Summer Show eighthwonder. Project Director Katie O’Brien ‘handed over the reins’ which gave Nina the opportunity to experience the curation of an open show first hand.

       DSC_0030 (2) David Wood / Watching Watching / 6’00’’

DSC_0022 (1)Christian Noelle Charles / Cc Time-An Introduction To The Narcissistic Mind
5’50’’ / 2017

44AD’s first open call summer exhibition was held in 2013 and opened on 8th August, thus deciding to name the show eighthwonder. Another significant feature of the show is the prescribed size of all the artworks: within the format of an A2 framework.

        DSC_0027 (1)   Tonia Gunstone / Bubble /photograph            Ella Shepard / Wake / giclee fine art print


DSC_0004Charlie Wayne / Dean / Marilyn     Paul Hartley / Blur (Standing)      Ella Shepard / Ignite


This year’s proposed theme was ‘identity’. Nina Jesih chose this subject because it is much talked about all around the world, especially at this moment in time. She hoped that the open call would bring together the work of many international artists and that the variety of artworks would show a different understanding of what this word means to different people.

DSC_0023 (1)Diane Hill  Citrus Circus

mixed media, assemblage

DSC_0005Seyed Mohsen Pourmohseni Shakib  / Innocence/Repression/Blindness/Sofia.


The first, most fundamental law of thought, according to the philosopher Aristotle, is the LAW OF IDENTITY: ‘A thing is identical with itself’.  

A thing is what it is; it cannot be a different thing. No two things can be exactly the same.

Law of Identity was therefore a convenient title for the exhibition.

‘Identity seems like a paradoxical idea – to be identical to something is to be the same, but to have an identity is to be unique. These two objects are identical, but I am not the same as anyone else’, described Will Barton, a communication psychologist, at the talk he had in the gallery.

DSC_0034 (1)Nick Greenglass /Gentle Polygon

Brian Gibson / Art is a Concept By Which We Measure our Social Status, Version 1

Jeannie Brown /Mind Map One / oil and acrylic on wood

Sophie Erin Cooper / The Things I Remembered /mixed media

Human identity is constructed in many ways. The world is full of people, who channel their own identity into everyday life. Be it is as individual expressions of character; through spirituality, culture, intellect and materialism. As a group through nationality, religion and politics. Or perhaps via object and industry – directing the veneer of corporate branding.

DSC_0031Jeni Wood / None of This is True / indian ink on acrylic with printed photo, acrylic on canvas, watercolour

However, what do we actually mean, when we classify something as identity? What does this broad concept of existing as someone or something in particular, mean?

The more we think about identity, the more we wonder just what it is. The more we think about our identity, the less we are sure who we are.

And exactly this is what the exhibition explored.

DSC_0013 (1).JPGBettina Amtag / Let Them Look All They Want / gilded papier-mâché, velvet cushion

DSC_0015 (1)Louise Thompson / First Impressions

Ruth Davies /Identity – Refugee / acrylic paint

Chloe Brenan / The Hole in the Donut

Charlie Hammond / Executive Realness / oil pastel on paper

Charlie Hammond /Mopping / oil pastel on paper

Silvia Lerin / F-Turquoise Pansy / acrylic and oil on canvas and wood

I am not one and simple, but complex and many.  Virginia Woolf, The Waves

Published by Deviation Street

Independent Image / Sound / Word online zine. Contributor based, always evolving . Rooted in the DIY ethos of Do It Yourself and DIT Do it together.

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