31 Jul - 28 Feb

SURFACE TENSION was an innovative community arts project connecting creativity across Portsmouth throughout Summer 2017.

Aspex, in partnership with Strong Island, the University of Portsmouth and Victorious Festival, commissioned three artists to generate new artwork, supported by creative industries students from the University.

These artworks were located at Victorious Festival in Summer 2017, inspired by and made using recycled materials. A trail map directed visitors to each artwork and will promote interaction either physically, through encouraging participation in an arts activity, or digitally by uploading photographs and comments to social media.

In September 2017 the work returned to the Gallery where it was showcased in a final exhibition.

The artworks responded to the themes of recycling, repurposing and the natural environment, inspired by our current exhibition everything comes from the egg, which comprises of reused and repurposed work made by artist Stephen Turner whilst living in a wooden egg-shaped vessel for one year.

The commissioned artists were: Paul Gonella and Tristan Savage (Strong Island); Rainatu Habib (University of Portsmouth, Illustration Graduate) - who acted as our artist-in-residence for the August period; Megan Humphries - who created a community artwork, engaging the people of Portsmouth through participatory workshops in the lead up to the Festival.

The project was kindly supported by the Centric Group, Gibson Whitter, Gunwharf Quays and the Faculty of Creative & Cultural Industries at the University of Portsmouth.

Discover more...

Strong Island Media produced a film documenting the progress of SURFACE TENSION, with interviews from each of the artists.

Get involved in 2018...

Following on from the success of SURFACE TENSION, we are delighted to announce The Inventors, an opportunity for businesses to support a participatory arts project which will culminate at Victorious Festival 2018.

The Inventors will invite the people of Portsmouth to explore new ways of making through a series of free workshops, exhibitions and events - in association with The Makers Guild.

The project is inspired by our Summer 2018 exhibition by innovative artist Will Cruickshank, who creates sculptures and other artworks by using homemade ‘Heath Robinson’ machines and jigs.

Three artists will be commissioned to act as inventors, developing new work for presentation at Victorious Festival, to be seen by over 150,000 people.

The Inventors will be assisted by ten students (Project Ambassadors) from the Faculty of the Creative & Cultural Industries at the University of Portsmouth - enabling their further creative and professional development.

The call for support for The Inventors is now open. This is an opportunity for a range of businesses to encourage creativity and innovation throughout Portsmouth. Click here to download the information pack.