Rebecca French and Andrew Mottershead are London-based artists whose work looks at the conventions of social exchange and its relationship to the public and private realms in which they are played out. Their work sets out to reveal often-ignored acts or communities and to subvert people’s expectations and the unwritten rules at play, mainly through tactical interventions that invite people to take part in a creative act. Their working process comes with a lot of communication and negotiation, and the outcome is often unpredictable, yet engaging and accessible. Their work has been said to achieve the popular ideal of raising people’s awareness of everyday life.
FrenchMottershead have exhibited and performed extensively in international contexts including art centres, museums, galleries, visual art and performance festivals, and in biennials and the public realm. These have included: The Photographers’ Gallery, the Liverpool Biennial, Tate Modern, Centro Cultural São Paulo, Galeria Vermelho, National Review of Live Art, Pingyao International Photography Festival, Site Gallery in Sheffield, the Arnolfini Gallery in Bristol and EASTinternational in Norwich. Site-specific locations have included shops and local newspapers in various international cities, the West Indian Ex-Serviceman’s Association, a public library, a North Tampa pool hall, and the pork supply chain in China.
Early works such
in 1999, drew on the landscape of members' only clubs to create
live art platforms for performance that invited participation. They began to develop an
approach called microperformance to invite people to engage complicitly
in creative acts. From
2000, the collaboration further diversified into large scale projects
incorporating research, workshops and live events such as Friday
Social Evening and My
Word is My Bond that activated the local constituency. Since then, the duo have explored methods of transforming
everyday actions into microperformances and have created new forms
of performance and audience interaction.
Recent works include a project called Walkways commissioned by Tate Modern including the publication of DVD, Over The Threshold with The Photographers Gallery, and a touring project for green spaces outside european cities called, Understory,1-12. Their book People, Places, Process: The Shops Project, compiling four years of research, documentation and artworks from their extended international project was published by Site Gallery in 2010.
FrenchMottershead’s work has led to numerous invitations to run workshops, give talks and teach in various contexts. Workshops specialising in the development of urban intervention practices have been hosted in Brussels, Glasgow and London. They’ve also given lectures at a range of Fine Art, Architecture, Performance and Social Science courses in the UK and beyond.