200 Lengths Per Year Exhibition Introduction by Luke Drozd

Its good to have constraints sometimes

A swimming pool, swimming bath, wading pool, or simply a pool, a place of relaxation and contemplation, exercise or sloth. At some point in the history of the bathhouse there was a shift from bathing to swimming, we became more mobile, sought other goals. We kept pushing. Apparently Olympic pools must be 50 metres in length by 25 metres wide, with a depth of at least 2 metres, divided into eight lanes with the water kept at 25–28 °C (77–82 °F) and the lighting level at greater than 1500 lux.
Its good to have constraints sometimes.

But of course this work is not about pools, swimming or otherwise. Welbourn's is a body of work, not of water after all, concerned with technique and texture and a way of humanising mechanical gestures or perhaps mechanising human ones. Within their picture planes we see surface noise, interruption, fluff and degradation, a perfect replication of the imperfect, because after all, life too has surface noise. There are systems at work here buried within these seemingly arbitrary lines, some dictated by the production of the work, others by the hand of the artist. They talk of creativity at play with long dead mathematicians
and topographers where tiny exceptions to the rule become gigantic, and where the gigantic is reduced, and perhaps a little about time well spent and a job well done. Its good to have constraints sometimes.

Welbourn's work invites us to ponder, to immerse ourselves, to dive in. They shimmer and shift, like light glancing off the ripples and debris of an out-of-season Lido. But as i mentioned, this work is about many things, but it is not about pools, swimming or otherwise.

Luke Drozd

click on the image below to look at the drawings