The inaugural Backdrop Commission by The Grantchester Pottery is an outdoor wall piece printed onto aluminium panels. Kyoto 2004 is 6 metres wide by 2.4 metres high and can be found adjacent to the glasshouse and Café 171.
The work is a large-scale reproduction of a hand-painted collage that utilises a cut-out technique. The collaged composition reflects Jerwood Space’s commitment to nurturing theatre and dance by considering the illusory nature of the stage, drawing inspiration from the painted stage works of David Hockney and Japanese architecture. The resulting artwork, reminiscent of early modernist compositions, recreates an interior as flat abstraction.
Decorative arts studio The Grantchester Pottery draws upon historical precedents such as Rebel Arts Centre, Hammer Prints and Atelier Martine for a point of conceptual departure. It produces decorative domestic objects including utilitarian ceramics, woven textiles, painted furniture and murals and seeks to substitute, wherever possible, the expressive quality of the artist’s handling for the deadness of mechanical reproduction.
Kyoto 2004 was commissioned by Jerwood Charitable Foundation in consultation with Jerwood Space in 2014. The Backdrop Commission project references the activities and community of Jerwood Space, which is widely recognised as one of the best rehearsal spaces for theatre and dance in the country. It accompanies the Jerwood Visual Arts exhibition programme, alongside the long-running Project Space initiative.