On the first weekend of each month, a Dalston-based studio opens its doors to the world. Absorb Arts isn't however, like your usual East London gallery party. The invitation is to go into the artists' place of work and view a selection of finished works, and some in progress.
The overall feel of the evening is like a rawer version of Freize, but in a more compact space. The emphasis is very much on fine art painting, photography and screen prints specifically, and was packed to the brim with people, some of whom had come up from the Arcola Theatre downstairs.
There was one very eye catching piece of (what I thought was) sculpture in the back room, consisting of a thick, imposing black post sticking up from the ground. It was attached to a thinner pole jutting out at right angles which spun round in circles, threatening to decapitate any tall people that walked past. There was a bird stuck on the end of it, which looked like a rare pigeon. Turns out it was actually a device that is commonly used by hunters for attracting birds so they can be shot at! Very Countryside Alliance. But in the metropolitan world of the East London art scene it became a bewitching (if not beheading) installation that looked funny and unsettling at the same time.
I went to see two artists: Katie Cox-Miller and Elly Clarke. I was treated to some warming mulled wine, music and mince pies for my (non-existent) troubles. Each time I go there are new surprises. Like an art treasure hunt but in one space. The artists are there and happy to talk about their work. I'd go again in a heartbeat.
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