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Critical Practice

Amelie Mckee

Currently based in London

Recent projects include Penrose Helix at Generation & Display gallery, London (2021); Bambi Woods, Space 52, Athens (2021); Everything Forever, Sissi Club, Marseille (2021); Not a Sphere but an irregular shape approximating a biaxial ellipsoid, DOOR, Zaandam (2021).

Amelie received a BA Fine Art from Chelsea College of Arts. Besides her use of sculpture and video she works collaboratively on curatorial projects via the Plicnik Space Initiative platform, online projects include D02.2 (2020) and SUB·RS (2021).

Degree Details

School of Arts & Humanities

Critical Practice

I am a visual artist operating across a wide range of disciplines; my practice investigates the conditions engendered by interpretation; how objects and ideas undergo status changes and exist within different realities and interpretations simultaneously. In my work, the essential quality of things and their existence within newly created frames of references are questioned. I share an interest in how fact and fiction intertwine usually experimenting with different languages to uncover dynamics at play.

I am the co-founder of Plicnik Collective, a fluid organisation that challenges the politics of art production and distribution in an online context. It researches the dynamics that are at play in the construction and diffusion of online art shows and proposes experimental environments for artists to create work in. Plicnik’s projects aim to reinstitute agency to artists in the production and display of their work and create new modalities in which to meet and envisage artworks.

exhibition installation — From left to Right Long House - Pilot Solutions - On the Making of Maggots (Ma Baocheng)
Pilot Solutions — mix media sculpture
Pilot Solutions — mix media sculpture
Long House — Audio installation

Penrose Helix alludes to the theme of surveillance via the motif of the tower. Towers are landmarks, international figures that typify the idea of progress. In this sense it is no surprise that they are powerful symbols to dismantle. The United States no longer boasts the tallest towers; contemporary military superpowers send the top of the tower — the all-seeing eye — straight to space with a rocket, skipping the need for spiral staircases altogether. Down below on the surface, their market system still relies on the ascension of a staircase, the capitalist staircase can forever be climbed, without making any progress. It is based on an infinite game of inflation and deflation, where value must be diminished in order to progress. The height and depth of the tower have been reduced to a Penrose model. We are caught in a two-dimensional reality where positioning and locating oneself becomes near impossible. Ascension has become illusional, and we no longer know who the observer is and who the observed.

My work operates as a dissection of delivery systems. Long house, an industrialised birth canal, questions the commodification of babies as they are increasingly approached as an embodiment of family values and used as a vehicle to portray the self in the online realm. Pilot Solutions, a series of sculptures, is inspired by drones situated between romantic ideals of flight and dystopian war devices. The work points at debates around the increase of mechanical devices affiliated to the body and the strategy of modification that seeks to avoid surveillance technology.