The Platform Graduate Award 2018

The Platform Graduate Award 2018

28 Sep - 31 Dec

“Platform is a very exciting part of our exhibition programme, enabling us to showcase a range of fresh, relevant and eclectic artwork from emerging artists across the South Coast”.  

- Director of Aspex, Joanne Bushnell

We are delighted to present our selection for the annual Platform Graduate Award with CVAN South East.

Twelve graduates have been chosen by our team from across six universities, representing some of the finest emerging visual artists in the South East region.

Our selected graduate artists are:

Carol Abell (Arts University Bournemouth), Kane Applegate (Southampton Solent University), Fiona Baanah-Jones (Winchester School of Art, University of Southampton), Simon Beasley (University of Portsmouth), Tash Dalziel (Winchester School of Art), University of Southampton), Hannah Davies (University of Chichester), Rosie Gatford (University of Chichester), Rachel Mortlock (Arts University Bournemouth), Annie Murrells (University for the Creative Arts, UCA Farnham), Josephine Rock (University for the Creative Arts, UCA Farnham), Carl Tai Thompson (University of Portsmouth), and George Waring (Southampton Solent University).

The combined works by these twelve aspiring artists form a group exhibition previewing on Thursday 27 September (18.00hrs), which runs through to 30 December 2018.

The same selection process is undertaken by four other galleries from across the region: De La Warr Pavilion in Bexhill-on-Sea, MK Gallery in Milton Keynes, Modern Art Oxford and Turner Contemporary in Margate.

One artist from each gallery will be nominated for the award, with the winning artist announced on 17 November by guest selector, artist Harold Offeh.  

Meet the artists

Carol Abell

Arts University Bournemouth

After several nervous breakdowns, Carol Abell found herself in the psychiatric hospital art room. This led to using art as a therapy, which in turn started her art education journey. From taking up art as her mental health crutch, to getting this fantastic opportunity and passing her BA (Hons) Fine Art, has taken Carol 11 years.

Place, history, craft and people influence her work. Work mediums have varied from paint, textiles, printing and mixed media. Carol wishes to continue to expand her knowledge and help others see the benefit of art as a distraction from life troubles.


Kane Applegate

Southampton Solent University

The juxtaposition of objects and the tension that can be created, both visually and physically, by the careful placing of found objects in relatively precarious positions, that features heavily in Kane Applegate’s work. The use of found objects, together with the placement of them into oddly jarring postures moves them away from their original intention. The strapping is clearly displayed and shows both the method of fixing but also is part of the sculpture, questioning what is form and what is function. This strapping links to a disfigured bicycle wheel that is placed a short distance away from the boat and acts visually as though it is a weight that holds the whole sculpture in place.


Fiona Baanah-Jones

Winchester School of Art – University of Southampton

Fiona Baanah-Jones is exploring the abstract elements of drawing to translate it into something else with lateral thinking. The work is about the unfamiliarity of drawings with the use of large scale. It is the relationship between abstraction and convention by the use of experimentation, to create the unknown in the composition. Drawings are translated into installation and sculpture, to create the potential for interaction with the physical space in the making process, to develop the pictorial image. Fiona likes the idea of using drawing and installation in her practice to change the physical space into the actual work.


Simon Beasley

University Of Portsmouth

Through his series of works ‘Present Shock’, Simon Beasley hopes to communicate complex ideas about social media and the internet, exploring our mental health as a consequence of these technological advances.

The outcome is designed to spark conversations using text from fifty years ago, helping Simon to gain new perspectives and understanding, whilst hopefully doing the same for others. The aim is to inspire new thoughts and challenge existing ones, connecting with people and talking about the world today.


Natasha Dalziel

Winchester School of Art – University of Southampton

Natasha Dalziel’s practice is nestled within a desire to make connections, offer a place of refuge, and protection of herself. Working as a dementia nurse, during the journey of a patient’s treatment, there would come a moment, when they would realise they were losing who they saw themselves to be. The enmity for this new self was strong, especially as they had no control over changing the situation. Natasha’s own mental health has fluctuated and her experience of depression has mirrored some of those responses – her fear of losing herself again has led Natasha to consider how she can ‘download’ herself for preservation. Her installation is a physical manifestation of her reflective journal and manifesto.


Hannah Davies

University of Chichester

The aim of Hannah Davies work is to create humorous but haunting sculptures. In the words of artist Nicola Hicks ‘the beauty of beasts is in their movements and their expressions’. Hannah aims to use these characteristics to create sculptures which will encourage the viewer’s inner child. The way she works is spontaneous and intuitive. The portrayal of human animals (chimeras) stems from the way we as humans often project human emotions onto animals. It also highlights the way we as humans see ourselves as separate from the natural world - by bringing the two together Hannah aims to dissolve this barrier. Her works are created over steel armatures and finished in fabrics as she believes that fabrics hold close meanings to us as individuals.


Rosie Gatford

University of Chichester

Rosie Gatford’s work aims to express fragility in mental health and the human functions of coping, and uses personal experiences to exploring and highlight how our emotional states can have an impact on thought processes and day-to-day life. The fragility of her material expresses the fragility of human emotion and how delicate life can be - the thread weaves together, merging and expanding to enclose the space, to trap and ensnare, and to hold tight and set free the emotional and mental turmoil.


Rachel Mortlock

Arts University Bournemouth

Rachel Mortlock’s artwork explores domestic space and our associations with the function of furniture and architecture within it. She makes sculptures compiled of a bricolage of DIY materials, reminiscent of furniture and aspects of architecture, whilst decisively refusing to function in the same way. Through the creation of dysfunctional furniture and sculpture, I draw attention to a specific use of materials, alluding to a function within the work and functions that exists outside of the work. Her recent work Cove juxtaposes a vast pristine tiled surface with the bare CLS and MDF framework that supports it; the four segments positioned, to echo remnants of an architectural detail.


Annie Murrells

University for the Creative Arts, UCA Farnham

Annie Murells’ work focuses on a moment of violence and the public and private faces of trauma. An inability to process events with clarity leads to public shaming, mockery and the need to pursue a victim. There is a closeness between vulnerability and violence and Annie is interested in how the supposed need to view horror impacts a social class divide and the relationship between the viewer and the subject. The desperation in the actions she is performing are inherently failed; she does not transform herself or the space, she is awkward in her actions and the films have an absurdity and humour because of this lack of transcendence. Mimesis allows Annie to embody the lives of women who are alien to her because of the portrayal of their life on screen, but who also represent both her and every woman.


Josephine Rock

University for the Creative Arts, UCA Farnham

Josephine Rock's interdisciplinary practice encompasses sculpture, film, performance, text, and photography. Her working methodology is research-led, like that of an investigative journalist, pursuing wide-ranging concerns from the amplification of power relations connecting the body and technology within online communities of ‘Doxy Spotters,’ to the co-option of mindfulness by the US army.

Born in 1990, Portsmouth, Rock completed her BA at University for the Creative Arts, Farnham. Recent exhibitions include Fully Mad And Completely Credible (Brewery Tap, Folkestone), When Our Lips Speak Together (James Hockey Gallery, Farnham) and Prefix is Post (Lewisham Arthouse, London). She has been shortlisted for the Woon Foundation Prize 2018.                                                           


Carl Tai Thompson

University Of Portsmouth

Carl Tai Thompson presents a  documented collection of the serial killings committed by his alter ego ‘Snake Eyes’, communicated through a series of prints and illustrations that create a thrilling narrative of an illusive murderer stalking the backstreets of India.

The collection portrays the killing career of ‘Snake Eyes’ over a period of several months as he travels between two main locations to find his unsuspecting victims. The artwork shows each of the artist-imagined murders and is translated visually by the artist through traditional forms of printingmaking, illustration and the collection of artefacts. With a ‘Jekyll and Hyde’ effect occurring between the artist and The Killer, the final instillation was created to force the viewer to play detective, by picking apart the crime scene and uncovering the truth.


George Waring

Southampton Solent University

The things and people George Waring has found to be beautiful; pieces of the world that drew his gaze or captured his attention, sights and experiences that he felt compelled to preserve, moments of pain or pleasure in which the camera was his only companion. Every single 35mm photograph George has taken over a period of five years: individually scanned, cropped, saved, filed, chronologised, and manually arranged into chronological columns. This piece is borne of his desire to finalise and move on from the nostalgia that these photos represent, but also is an expression and celebration of the times and people that have made George who he is today. George wishes to be able to look back on this period, rather than hold himself back in an attempt to keep on living it.



Image: Josephine Rock (2018)