Julia Keenan

Painter / Sculptor / Film Maker

I am a visual artist, graduating in 2015 with a B.A. [hon] in Fine Art from The University for the Creative Arts in Farnham. Working with materials to explore participatory systems of objects and environments. The work plays with themes of materiality, transformation and the theatricality of flatness. My practice was selected for the 'Platform' Graduate Award by C.V.A.N. and I am an associate at ASPEX Portsmouth and CAS Arts Andover. Since graduation my work has been shown with Gallery and Museum Spaces throughout the U.K. and more recently internationally with my film 'Tender Vessels' selected for the International Film Festival 2020. Recipient of the Graduate Bursary 2015 from The University of the Creative Arts Farnham. Recipient of the Associate Artist Bursary 2020 from Aspex Gallery Portsmouth. Artist Statement - April 2020. I have always been interested in people, in how they communicate and identify through signs and signifiers of behavior and apparel. My work is currently thinking around the impact of digital media - the positive and negative aspects of this new form of representation. Materials are central to the practice and have evolved carefully through research and experimentation and now have come to represent my visual language. There is a constant tension between the sculptures made and their rather more glamorous imaged based portraits which have all been through the filtering process of social media. The lines between where the actual work begins, and ends is always eluding me. The work plays with themes of materiality, transformation, and theatricality using photography and scale to 'monumentalize' the sculptures into larger than life installations. These act as a back drop to short experimental films within which the 'works' or protagonists perform. The recent lock-downs have caused a shift in practice and I have taken the time to reflect, research and move into the medium of paint. This new series of works in progress, whilst still examining the core interests of my practice, have taken things in a fresh new direction.