The exhibition brought together newly commissioned works made specially for The Tetley with a selection of existing work, shown alongside several drawings and sculptures from the Musgrave Kinley Outsider Art Collection at The Whitworth, The University of Manchester.
The body is a malleable source of wonder and horror for Aparicio – it is simultaneously a mask, a costume to be worn, and a changing, ever-moving form shaped by ageing and disease. Aparicio’s figures take their skin off and leave it behind draped over chairs; creatures emerge from under fingernails; features are squashed and smashed together.
Underneath the skin, the body’s hidden functions are affected by the world outside. In the film A Mysterical Journey we travel into digestive tracts, through nerves and veins, as the body improbably digests chairs, mops, knives and pot plants. Humour and an aesthetic style inspired by comic books and cartoons belies a concern for the bodily impact of daily life, disease and age.
Aparicio also created a new drawing for The Tetley’s Leeds Beckett Atrium wall, filling the gallery space and flowing into the ground floor Bar & Kitchen. Spanning four floors and curling around walls, the drawing is impossible to view in its entirety.
Alongside Aparicio’s works was a selection of works by six female artists from the Musgrave Kinley Outsider Art collection, with sculptures by Marie Rose Lortet and Judith Scott, and drawings by Aloise Corbaz, Madge Gill, Lee Godie and Martha Grunenwaldt. The Musgrave Kinley Outsider Art collection was started in 1984 with the express purpose of collecting artworks created outside the mainstream system of formal art training. The collection includes a wide range of artists from across the world, including the USA, Germany, France and Britain, and artists with mental and physical disabilities.
With special thanks to The Whitworth, The University of Manchester.