Rae Chapman is an artist with a background in social policy, community work and action research, who uses her practice to explore alternative constructs of reality. Rae has a long term relationship with Cornwall creating many of her works here and we are delighted to be hosting her for a residency timed to coincide with the G7 meeting of global leaders, which is scheduled to take place in Carbis Bay, Cornwall on the 11th-13th June 2021. In her Words “I’m returning now because, in the midst of a global crisis and an extraordinary planetary alignment, world leaders are flying into Cornwall to ‘build back better’. It is a momentous moment to be in Kernow – in Redruth – in Back Lane West – at the very epicentre of an epic shift.”
Where the centre is can be subjective – like reality. In 2009 Rae became an Artist Inquirer for the European Region of Culture mission, one of nine artists selected to undertake artist residencies in Finland, Poland and the UK in order to make the case for Cornwall as a non-urban centre of culture. Rae was based in Toruń, Poland, the birthplace of the astronomer Copernicus, who through his work capsized the certainty of where the centre of the universe might be.
Rae’s research into space and astronomy also led her to work with Goonhilly Earth Station and the Marconi Radio Station on a project where she installed a mobile planetarium at the Eden Project to present the cultural and cultural glitterati of Europe with a journey through the universe to the sound of stars. Deep Space Message sent a Mayday message saying ‘please send help – we’re in trouble’ into deep space. Rae is still listening and watching for the reply.
Rae is currently using textiles and film editing to play with ideas, exploring compositing techniques to allow her to construct and juxtapose different realities and scenarios, and using textiles as a flexible material with craft processes to create some props. She plans to spend some of her time at Back Lane West working in response to the positioning of a global summit designed to “help the world fight and then build back better from coronavirus and create a greener, more prosperous future” in Cornwall, whether the event becomes a reality or not.
Rae studied MA Fine Art at Falmouth University and is now based in Sheffield. She has supported and delivered arts programmes throughout the southwest for Aim Higher, with Arts for Health and as Head of Student Services. She is an unpaid carer.
Rae has a malleable approach to media that allows her to communicate her work to an audience through film, photography, surround sound, textiles, the internet and conversation. For Rae art is a way of conducting research, observing, listening, interpreting, making connections, finding meaning and making sense of the world around us.
Her artistic research has led her to work with organisations like Hewlett Packard European Laboratories and Nokia (Finland) and undertake residencies in Copenhagen, London, Newlyn, Lapua and Torun.