Emily Speed

Nominated By: Sally Tallant, Director, Liverpool Biennial
Region: North West

Emily Speed’s interest lies in the relationship between people and buildings; her work explores the body and its relationship to architecture. She uses simple materials, very often recycled that she assembles and paints. For the Northern Art Prize exhibition she has created a new work that includes wooden structures, drawings, costumes and molded architectural models. Two pieces of architectural furniture; one, asks for participation from others and the other will be animated by performers during the exhibition.

‘Carapaces’ (meaning an organic bony case or shield covering an animal) is a work that considers the idea of a personal or psychological space. Its two-person sized structure-on-wheels hints at protection and vulnerability, isolation and co-dependency. ‘Carapaces’ takes inspiration from the improbable, intimate and strangely scaled buildings in the frescos of Renaissance artist Giotto. Speed draws upon early Italian paintings that feature unstable and awkward looking architecture that is often scaled around the human body and has a fragility and flimsiness.

‘Carapaces’ Performance: Every Wednesday during the exhibition from 12.30-1.30pm, Emily Speed’s sculptural installation will be animated by performers.

We would like to thank all of the volunteers who are performing as part of this work: Ruth Eaton, Charlotte Blackburn, Lydia Catterall, Eleanor Chownsmith, Joely Fielding, Beth Gadd, Emma Gee, Rebecca Jones, Dania Kooner, Charlotte Lister, Amanda Millington, Sonia Tome Myers, April Skipp, Amy Stevenson, Emily Towler.

Artist Talk: Tuesday 23 April, 6pm Emily Speed will be in conversation with her nominator Sally Tallant (Director, Liverpool Biennial). Tickets are £5 (£3 concessions) on the door. Reservations can be make at Leeds Art Gallery on 0113 247 8256

Biography: Emily Speed, born 1979, is based in Frodsham, Cheshire. Speed studied for a BA (Hons) Drawing & Painting, Edinburgh College of Art from 1997 – 2001 before completing an MA in Fine Art: Drawing at University of the Arts London: Wimbledon College of Art in 2005-6.  Since graduation Speed has exhibited at, among others, Oredaria Gallery, Rome; Laumeier Sculpture Park, St Louis, USA; Danielle Arnaud Gallery, London; Bluecoat, Liverpool; Yorkshire Sculpture Park and Musée Cantonal des Beaux-Arts, Lausanne, Switzerland. During the Northern Art Prize 2013 exhibition she will also be exhibiting at Castlefield Gallery in Manchester alongside Hayley Newman.