Scale, interconnectedness, and phenomenology are a few of the overlapping and far-reaching themes running through the works in Chris Soal’s latest solo exhibition.
On show at Cape Town’s Whatiftheworld gallery until 6 March 2021, As below so above considers the viewer’s experience in relation to the monumental scale of these works.
In the accompanying exhibition statement, Whatiftheworld states that ‘[The works’] immersive scale prompts a phenomenological connection between conceptual engagement and bodily interaction. Soal connects, both visually and thematically, the intestinal or cerebral twists of the bottle top works with the exhibition’s title, which is an inversion of the saying, “As above, so below”.’
The Johannesburg-based artist’s detailed and mesmeric toothpick and bottlecap sculptural works have seen him winning numerous awards and residencies over the years, and are included in a number of public and private collections. His latest body of work explores, amongst other things, ‘The self being a microcosm of the community, and a toothpick being a humble unit that, when collectivised, forms the whole artwork.’ This mode of working is also reflective of his intuitive working process, which ‘stems from somewhere in-between the gut and the brain.’
As below so above runs in conjunction with his solo exhibition at the Nirox Sculpture Park in the Cradle of Humankind. The exhibition touches on themes of ruins, decay, erosion, the relic, and effigy.
View some of the works from As below so above on Whatiftheworld.