Olana Light: Living Land
I have chosen Hadrian’s Wall because the site is a rich, vibrant place, its history is vast and impressive. It was a place of integration and exchange where boundaries and borders crossed. In my practice, I am interested to explore the relationship between places and communities, encouraging new perceptions of the world by taking the audience to a visual Other. In this example the Hadrian’s-Wall site is part of the community.
My response: Living Land
In the age of migration that we now live I see a Hadrian’s Wall site as a space of transformation for multicultural communities that live around it. Nature and its habitat play an important part in it.
I see a human-like living-tree creature migrating from Scotland to find their sanctuary in the Hadrian-Wall land: a place of transition in which identities become blurred and situations of otherness develop, in a complex interplay of place, and social and spatial norms.
Olana Light is based in Hampshire. She has an MA from Goldsmiths (2020) and BA from Southampton Solent University (2017). Recent awards include an Arts Council England National Lottery Project Grant (2021); ‘a space’ arts Lucky Dip Bursary (2021); Zealous Stories Sculpture (2021); the Sunny Art Prize Award (2020); and the Goldsmiths International Response Scholarship Award (2017). She was also shortlisted for the Zealous Stories: Short Film (2022); the Zealous Stories Performance (2020); Batsford Prize Award (2019 and 2017); the Harvest Short Film Competition (2019); the Visual Art Open Prize (2018); the Nasty Women International Art Prize (2018); and the Platform Graduate Award (2017) (nominated by Aspex Gallery).
Olana Light’s practice moves between sculpture, performance and moving image. She makes immersive, disorientating, otherworldly installations and wearable sculptures which are mythic representations of her worldview. Inhabited by the creature that is neither human nor alien, real or imaginary, these environments and tactile costumes bend the fragile boundaries of our perceived reality. Occupying a space between the mundane and the unnervingly strange, her work reminds us of the ways we each search for meaning and belonging, while alert to the uncanny world around us.