ANTS AND GRASSHOPPERS: reflections on the anxious object
20 May–27 June 2021 Preview Day Thursday 20 May 12–8pm Open Thursday–Sunday 12–6pm
Pavel Büchler, Eva Kot’átková, John Latham & Sarah Lucas with musical composition by John Cage
Curated by David Thorp
‘The status of art has become uncertain. At least, it is ambiguous. No one can say with assurance what a work of art is—or, more important, what is not a work of art. Where an art object is still present it is what I have called an anxious object: It does not know whether it is a masterpiece or junk.’ 
ANTS AND GRASSHOPPERS: reflections on the anxious object examines whether or not art can have the capacity to subvert, and indeed, create anxiety. Does the art object have that potential? Or is any anxiety that abounds rather an indication of its maker’s existential state? This exhibition queries whether the ‘psychophysical sculpture’ that is Flat Time House could be an example of an anxious object. Alongside the newly restored book sculpture that transects the façade of the building, is presented the work of three contemporary artists, and a musical composition by John Cage, for each of whom in different ways this condition is evident.
 Harold Rosenberg. On the De-Defininition of Art, University of Chicago Press,1983. p12
“ ” #3 Becky Beasley in conversation with Claire Scanlon
Flat Time House is pleased to host “ ” for the launch of their new publication featuring Becky Beasley in conversation with Claire Scanlon. “ ” #3: Becky Beasley / Claire Scanlon is available as a free download via the Flat Time House website throughout the winter months of 2020/21 and will be accompanied by responses from writers including Sharon Kivland, Susan Morris, Joseph Noonan-Ganley, and Jessica Potter over the course of several weeks, constituting a cumulative slow launch as a deliberate tactic of decompression.
“ ” (quotation mark quotation mark) is a series of books, which, via dialogues with artists, looks at the forms and roles of publishing, dissemination, and feedback in the context of artistic practices and the formation of communities.
Issue #3 of the series, Becky Beasley / Claire Scanlon (2019) follows on from Beasley’s one-way correspondence with her former tutor Scanlon. Meeting, now as friends, they talk about mental health, gendered labour, the domestic, the time and space of work, and how these factors converge on creative practices in both positive and less-positive ways. The artists discuss strategies for maintaining presence through periods of happiness or adversity, and make note of methods and ‘superpowers’ that have allowed them to pursue their practices in the face of familial needs, material limitations, or personal struggles (Beasley describes her battle with depression). Brief lessons of survival, clarity, ambiguity, care, and resistance, recorded with the intention of providing a useful resource to readers.
William Evans and Julia Crabtree with Alice Hattrick
William Evans and Julia Crabtree in collaboration with Alice Hattrick are developing a major new project for Flat Time House’s garden. Over the next 6 months the group will ‘excavate’ the John Latham archive, as well as the garden itself, to consider the conceptual and material aspects of the site. In his younger days Latham was a market gardener and his lifelong passion for gardening is demonstrated at Flat Time House by the integration of a conservatory for planting into the studio he built for himself in 1985. Alongside research into Latham and the site, their research will consider permaculture, care, community, collective action, deep time, and issues of classification. They will use Latham's thinking on making and living, and his inquiry into time and ecology, to investigate the relationship of the garden and botany to authority and power. A public event in Summer 2021 will share their research.
Flat Time House (FTHo) was the studio home of John Latham (1921-2006), recognised as one of the most significant and influential British post-war artists. In 2003, Latham declared the house a living sculpture, naming it FTHo after his theory of time, ‘Flat Time’. Until his death, Latham opened his door to anyone interested in thinking about art. It is in this spirit that Flat Time House opened in 2008 as a gallery with a programme of exhibitions and events exploring the artist's practice, his theoretical ideas and their continued relevance. It also provides a centre for alternative learning, which includes the John Latham archive, and an artist's residency space.
Thursday – Saturday 12–6pm for temporary exhibitions
Open by appointment at all other times – call 0207 207 4845
Kelly Lloyd RESEARCH RESIDENCY
Artist Kelly Lloyd is currently undertaking a research residency at Flat Time House focusing on John Latham’s collection of books. Latham’s library, which includes books intended for the making of artwork as well as for research purposes, has never been catalogued or the subject of sustained investigation. In addition to being interested in Latham's ideas concerning the intersection between time and value, Kelly Lloyd will explore the library with particular interest in Latham's personal books vs. books for work, marginalia and other physical interventions, and personal collections as forms of portraiture. Kelly Lloyd will present her research through a public outcome in September 2021.
/origin\forward/slash\ is the infrathin banner under which, behind which and through which a band of artists and philosophers are exploring their mutual fascinations and antagonisms with Martin Heidegger’s essay The Origin of the Work of Art (1950).
Currently on a remote placement due to Covid 19, the group have extended John Latham’s body-based floor plan of Flat Time House with an additional virtual room, ‘the other hand.’ Here they co-habit from time to time, using the web interface as a way of experimenting with formats for visual and verbal thinking together and adding victuals to their archive cabinet.
The /origin\forward/slash\ group are Steven Claydon (Independent), Marie Hay (De Montfort University), Sacha Golob (Kings College, London), Jo Malt (Kings College, London), Hester Reeve (Sheffield Hallam University), Mark Titmarsh (University of Technology, Sydney), Georgios Tsagdis (Leiden University | Erasmus University Rotterdam). This project is lead by Hester Reeve (Reader in Fine Art, Sheffield Hallam University) in association with The Centre for Philosophy and Visual Arts (Kings College London).
The /origin\forward/slash\ group will host a live online event in June 2021 and launch an exhibition at Flat Time House in 2022.
Wayi Wayi Creatives Village Fundraiser
7 May 2021
This year Agness and Lawrence Yombwe of Wayi Wayi Art Studios & Gallery, Livingstone, Zambia, hosted an event 'African Incidentalism: The Context is Half the Work’, that marked the birth of John Latham 100 years ago on 23 February 1921 in Livingstone and related it to contemporary creatives in Zambia. Flat Time House was delighted to join artists in Livingstone and the UK, and members of John Latham’s family to mark this centenary.
Wayi Wayi Creatives Village project was initiated in response to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, threatening the livelihoods of families in Livingstone. The project will integrate artist initiatives with the planting of crops and trees, offer training opportunities and employment to local artists and communities, and help rebuild the economy.
Flat Time House would like to share Wayi Wayi Creatives Village’s crowdfunding page for those interested in supporting the project.