Chattels is Paul Grellier and Nick Grellier’s first collaboration in more than twenty years. It represents a restoration of friendship and revival of shared artistic interests.
“The dispersal of possessions is part of the life/death process and as artists, we are acutely aware of the volumes we amass.” The exhibition examines familial and artistic legacy and questions the burden of matter through the artists’ playful practices.
Both Grelliers incorporate a sense of the absurd in their work which, in Chattels, includes drawing, painting, collage, sculpture and assemblage. Paul’s recent work looks at human evolution and behaviour via tools and other objects incongruously embodied in carved stone, celebrating both beauty and damage. Nick works with methodical, repetitive processes and everyday materials attending to peculiarities in commonplace things and the complexity of verbal communication.
The twin Chapels of Rest – one for the Church of England and the other for non-conformists, separated by an arch – were built in the mid-19th century for the deceased of Stroud, serving funereal purpose until the 1970’s. Since then they have lain largely abandoned, save for a spell housing the Town Council maintenance team tools and machinery.
The curation of the disparate spaces will draw on issues of conformity/non-conformity, and how the work is viewed in an unconventional setting, reflecting the dualities in the concept of chattels and questioning ideas about what matters and what is just matter.
Nick and Paul met at Chelsea School of Art in the mid 1980’s and subsequently moved to Stroud, raising their family and sharing studios before separating in 2000. Both artists continue to live and work in the area.
The Chapels are in process of regeneration and this collaborative exhibition represents a renewal and rejuvenation for these communal spaces, as well as for the artists. There will be a chaired discussion on September 14th with invited artists and writers responding to chattels and art as possessions, clobber, legacy … Fridays 3-7pm, Saturdays and Sundays 11am-5pm or by appointment.
Pictures by Simon Pizzey