Florence Peake:
WE perform I am in love with my body

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23 June –

8 September 2017

Florence Peake’s first solo exhibition WE perform I am in love with my body at the gallery, consisted of a series of drawings made by the artist in her studio, and which were commissioned by Wysing Arts Centre during her residency in 2016, with funding from Arts Council England. Performed on a horizontal surface, Peake uses the floor as a medium of support and resistance for her body to act out an expression of falling into an immersive sensorial experience, backwards into the horizontal. The floor and the body become a site for falling in love with the sensation of movement through sensing skin, flesh, bone. Simultaneously drawing an outline of her body/movement. Peake wants to contemplate ones own body as a complete territory of pleasure to sink into. Through these movement drawings an ensemble of characters/bodies are collected and come to re-perform once hung on the wall, the vertical; falling backwards becomes falling into rising up the wall.

Florence Peake’s practice encompasses visual art, dance and performance. As a trained dancer her background in choreography and painting stimulates a studio practice that is both diverse and immersive; she is often working performatively to incorporate drawing, painting and sculptural materials. Through public performances and carefully choreographed works Florence Peake challenges notions of physicality, loss and political concerns such as the commodification of art by the corporate world. By encouraging chaotic relationships between the body and material, Peake creates radical and outlandish performances, which create temporary alliances and micro-communities within the audience. In believing that objects and materials have their own autonomy and subjectivity, The artist draws on the expansive vocabulary of materials to enhance and contextualise her work. The sculptural works operate as documentation of the performance, but never in a reductive way, as Peake attempts to incorporate the effect of site, audience and much more than the pure physicality of the performance. Her current painting work, with mixed media, attempts to capture the live experience of performing, performers inner states and memory of a given performance as she re-performs live works through large scale canvas and fresco works. These investigations have also been applied to her exploration of ceramics, taking performance as her subject, and making clay forms through live performances to extract new and autonomous sculptural works. Recent performance work has taken themes from popular spiritual practices and appropriated them to interact intimately with audiences, exploring a range of states of being to test what people assume as their own reality.

Commissioned by Wysing Arts Centre with funding from Arts Council England

Florence Peake’s work has been shown nationally and internationally; she is a recipient of the Jerwood Choreographic Research project, 2016. Currently, she is working on an ongoing project with the Cass Sculpture Foundation, UK. Her solo performance piece, Voicings, has toured to Sara Zanin Gallery, Rome, 2017; the Serpentine Gallery, Mysterical day, 2016; Somerset House for Block Universe performance festival, 2016. Solo exhibitions include: The Keeners Solo show at SPACE 2015; Hall of the swell, Gallery Lejeune, 2015; The BALTIC, Newcastle ensemble piece MAKE. Group exhibitions include: Hayward Gallery, a 3 month performance installation as part of Mirrorcity, 2015; National Portrait Gallery, performing group work Paper Portraits, 2015. She has done commissions from: Whitechapel Art Gallery; Yorkshire Sculpture Park; Modern Art, Oxford; Chapter Arts, Cardiff; Harris Museum, Preston; David Roberts Art Foundation, London. Peake teaches extensively nationally and abroad recently in Athens as part of a 3 week intensive. She works as a performer for a range of choreographers, directors and film makers, including : Gaby Agis, Jonathan Baldock, Gary Stevens and Station house Opera.

Installation Views


Florence Peake in conversation with Matthew McLean

25 July 2019


Improvisation : Touch Horizontal Pleasure

Friday 8th September 2017, 4-8pm.


Interview with Florence Peake by Matthew McLean on occasion of her solo exhibition WE perform: I am in love with my body at Bosse & Baum, 2017