135 artists are taking part in "Inside Job" which takes place on the 7th and 8th of April on Level 6 of Tate Modern. Over the next few weeks The Rebel Magazine will be chatting to some of the Tate staff who are showing their artwork. Today it's the turn of Anna Reading
Q) Where did you grow up and what kind of education did you receive?
"I was born in Newcastle Upon Tyne and grew up in Norwich from age 5. At 19 I moved to London to do a Foundation course at Chelsea College of Art and then BA Sculpture at Central St Martins, graduating in 2010. I am a recent graduate of Slade School of Fine Art MFA Sculpture in June 2017."
Q) How long have you been working at the Tate and what's the best show you've seen there?
"I have worked at Tate on and off since 2011 when I joined the Membership and Ticketing team. In 2015 I joined the Art Handling team and work across the three sites, Modern, Britain and Stores. My favourite Tate show was definitely Phillipe Parreno's Turbine Hall commission Anywhen. The experience of lying on the carpeted floor searching out the inflatable fish in the building's roof was such a subtle way to make sense of the space. The constantly shifting audio and video landscape created an environment in transition. I was so aware of the space and my own body. The cuttlefish video was took me down to the depths of the ocean and our undersea evolutionary roots."
Q) What can you tell me about the work you're exhibiting in the Tate Modern show?
"The piece is called Marrow. It is a sculpture made of a ply wood frame, clad in card and foam, then carved and finally rendered all over in household gloss paint. The process of these sculptures is very much about making by hand and allowing the form to change through making. I want the works meaning to be slippery and exist beyond binaries, referencing both anatomy and organic forms as much as the synthetic and mechanical. The work appears familiar and puzzling at once, existing between organic and architecture, ancient and futuristic, decay and regeneration.
I am inspired by language and often write texts to accompany my works. Below is a text I wrote to accompany the piece.
Marrow Barrow Arrow
This is you /
As a tube within a tube /
The set of DNA /
Within us all is identical /
The fish /
The axylotyl /
The common fangtooth /
The bobbing sperm whale /
The sea pig and dumbo octopus /
The jogger And the lycra clad cyclist /
The semi conscious chihuahua /
And its soft spoken owner /
The DNA /
Soft dissolve /
Edges blur /
Edges blue /
Edges true /
The cervical vertebrae /
Repeats over and over /
Up the spine /
And again through time /
Through every bendy limbed being /
Except for the cranky spider /
that automaton /
Crawled right out of my cerebral cortex
Q) How can people find out more about your work - do you have a website or do Instagram?
My website in www.annareading.co.uk and Instagram is @annareading
Q) Is there anything you have to declare / do you have a favourite quote, thought or joke you'd care to share?
This is my favourite poem. Its called The Frog by Francis Ponge. I think it describes the process of art making perfectly; the sense if fascination with the extraordinary as well as the necessity to let an idea develop without constraint.
When the short little needles of rain bounce off the saturated meadows, an amphibian dwarf, a one-armed Ophelia, barely as big as a fist, sometimes springs up from beneath the poet’s feet and throws herself to the next pond.
She is nervous, let her flee. She has pretty legs. Her whole body is gloved with impermeable skin. Hardly meat, her long muscles have the elegance of neither fish nor fowl.
But to escape the fingers, her liquid virtue goes to efforts of staying alive.
Goitrous, she pants… and that fat beating heart, those wrinkled eyelids, that haggard mouth
Move me to release her.