Art in Uncertain Times: Amber Boardman's Crowd Paintings Take on a New Meaning
Amber Boardman has long been fascinated with the ways we all come together. Her doctoral research, she explains, "examined how the Internet can shape the behaviour of individuals who become amorphous, bending their behaviour and appearance in step with changing social and beauty trends. Beginning in 2019, I wanted to pull back the lens to look at the ways crowds behave as a whole. These works characterise the behaviours and collective desires of crowds of people ranging from Black Friday Sale shoppers, to CrossFit goers, and sporting event spectators."
As the Covid 19 hit she was working on several new crowd paintings for a show in Sydney, Australia. "In the middle of a global pandemic these paintings of crowds in street protests, stadiums, and music festivals take on a different meaning," says Boardman. "They remind us that in the blink of an eye the entire world can be a different place. These works show our very recent past in a time where there is no certainty about the new normal in a post COVID-19 world."
Text compiled by Alex Nicholson