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Past Projects

Jonathan Trayte: Polyculture

22 July – 9 October 2016

In his first solo show in a public gallery in the UK, London-based sculptor Jonathan Trayte presented a variety of recent works especially made and selected for The Tetley. Trayte's work explored our complex relationship with food, from the production industry and global supply chains that engineer and design the products we consume, to its emotional and social role in today's food obsessed society.

Trayte's sculptural installations of 1:1 casts of super-sized, prize vegetables are exuberant and comical. Using bare concrete or lurid painted bronze, Trayte's installations echo familiar sites of consumption, from haphazard market-stalls to carefully orchestrated supermarket displays and elaborate dinner tables.

Trayte borrows his eye-popping colour palette from a vast array of food packaging – designed to catch the eye of consumers and compete with rival brands. Accentuating their unusual scale with unnatural ornamentation, common vegetables are transformed into glossy objects of desire, too good to eat.

Works that were on display demonstrated Trayte's ongoing research interest that has involved the artist undertaking international residencies and visiting markets and factories where food is sold and produced.

Trayte has also engaged with academic research, most recently collaborating with Professor Charles Spence at the experimental psychology laboratory at Oxford University, to gain an insight in how consumer decision-making is manipulated in commercial environments using various means, materials, lighting and temperatures.

Jonathan Trayte, Installation Shot, 2016. Courtesy the artist and The Tetley.

Jonathan Trayte, Installation Shot, 2016. Courtesy the artist and The Tetley.

Jonathan Trayte, Installation Shot, 2016. Courtesy the artist and The Tetley.

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