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Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art Announces Exhibition by British Photographer Fiona Crisp
Fiona Crisp, Geevor Series: Victory Cross Cut 2008/9. All archival digital inkjet print from colour transparency 110 x110 x 5 cm.

GATESHEAD.- Subterrania, a solo exhibition of large scale photographic works by British artist Fiona Crisp, will be presented at Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art from Friday 31 July to Sunday 4 October 2009.

The powerfully compelling, sculptural images presented in Subterrania are curated from a number of distinct series of works evolved by Fiona Crisp over the last six years. The images have been developed at a series of diverse European locations from early Christian Roman Catacombs to a Second World War underground hospital in Guernsey and locally to the North East, Crisp produced the still and meditative images of Killhope, a lead mining museum in Country Durham.

The apparently disparate locations for theses images were chosen by Crisp primarily for the sense of physical power that they evoke but also for the fact that they are all now tourist sites where complex relationships between heritage, leisure and history are brought into question. Here, contrary to a location’s specific historic purpose that allowed access to a defined group of users, these sites have now been opened up for tourism where the boundaries between modern experience and historical truth are unavoidably blurred.

Fiona Crisp is known for making large-scale photographic installations that explore the relationship between photography and architectural space. One of the central themes in Crisp’s work is the gap that exists between physical experience and visual perception – essentially between encountering a space or landscape and the subsequent visualisation of that scene. In this new body of work, it is the journey from phenomenological experience to photographic representation that is explored. Here, indicators of time, climate or identifiable location are all suspended, leaving instead a sense of intense interiority.

Subterrania is a touring exhibition hosted by Newlyn Art Gallery, Cornwall , after showing at Baltic it will travel to Impressions Gallery, Bradford from Friday 20 November 2009 to Sunday 24 January 2010 before moving to Newlyn Art Gallery from Saturday 13 February to Saturday 17 April 2010.

Born in 1966, Fiona Crisp completed a postgraduate degree at The Slade School of Fine Art, London in 1993 and since this time has exhibited both nationally and internationally. During her fellowship at The British School at Rome, Crisp exhibited at Galleria Nationale d’Arte, Rome and works from this period formed the commissioned installation, Santa Maria at Aspex Gallery, Portsmouth in 2003. Recent exhibitions include You Shall Know Our Velocity at Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art, Gateshead Phantasm at Market Gallery, Glasgow and Ruination a group exhibition at the Djanogly Gallery, Nottingham showing the work of Olivo Barbieri, Richard Billingham, Fiona Crisp and John Riddy. Crisp is currently exhibiting work at FotoGrafia, International Photography Festival in Rome.

Fiona Crisp lives and works in Northumberland and is a Senior Lecturer in Fine Art at Northumbria University. She is represented by Matt’s Gallery, London and her work is held in the collections of The Tate Gallery, The Government Art Collection, The Arts Council Collection and private collections.

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