Pura Vida
Pura Vida
Pura Vida
Pura Vida
Pura Vida
Pura Vida
Pura Vida
Pura Vida

Pura Vida

S Mark Gubb
21.06.–15.12. 2014

English below

Verk S Mark Gubb, sem birtast mun á skiltinu ber titilinn Pura Vida. Hugmyndin að verkinu á rætur sínar að rekja til Costa Rica sem listamaðurinn heimsótti og hreifst af æðruleysi innfæddra og notkun þeirra á orðatiltækinu Pura Vida. Pura Vida getur útlagst sem tært eða hreint líf, en er einnig notað til að heilsa, þakka eða lofa gjörðir einhvers. Í raun er orðatiltækið samnefnari fyrir allt sem er jákvætt.

Annað orðatiltæki innfædds manns sem Mark heyrði á Costa Rica var að ef maður hefði kirkju, bar og fótboltavöll þá væri hægt að tala um að maður hefði bæ. Mark hefur því í huga sér búið til vísi að útópískum Pura Vida bæ. Bæ sem hægt er að heimfæra á hvaða stað sem er. Nokkurs konar andlega afstöðu þess efnis að maður getur kosið að búa í sínu persónulega Pura Vida hvar sem maður er niður kominn. Það eina sem maður þarf að vita, er hvar næsta kirkja er, næsti bar og næsti fótboltavöllur. Á skiltinu er Mark því að heimfæra Pura Vida á Reykjavík og notar Skiltið sem útgangspunkt.

Mark segist ekki vera mjög trúaður né aðdándi fótbolta, svo Pura Vida er ekki hans persónulega útópía, frekar fjalli verkið um þá hugmynd að við getum kosið að lifa í okkar eigin Pura Vida hvar sem við erum. Mark segir jafnframt sem dæmi að ef við erum hrifin af tónlist, hamborgurum og kvikmyndum, þá er okkar Pura Vida, tónlistarhús, hamborgarastaður og kvikmyndahús. Hann segir að verkið fjalli um að ráða sér sjálfur og ekki kenna heiminum um óánægju okkar. Þrátt fyrir að hljóma alvarlega, þá megi einnig sjá þetta sem hyllingu einfaldleikans.

S Mark Gubb (f. 1974) býr og starfar í Cardiff. Verk hans spanna marga ólíka miðla, höggmyndir, myndbönd, hljóðverk, innsetningar og gjörninga. Hann sækir innblástur í félagslegt og pólitískt ástand menningarinnar sem hann ólst upp í, með jafnri hrifningu á því góða og slæma sem einkennir líf okkar. Því er oft um að ræða endurmat og endurtúlkun á sögu samtímans og menningu hennar, með hvatningu þess að við tökum afstöðu til þátttöku okkar í heiminum sem við lifum í.
Mark hefur sýnt verk sín víða, bæði á einkasýningum auk þáttöku í samsýningum. Meðal annars: Turner Contemporary (Margate), Dublin Contemporary, Aspex Gallery (Portsmouth), Postmasters Gallery (NYC), Matthew Bown Gallery (Berlin), Mostyn (Llandudno), Ceri Hand Gallery, (Liverpool), Castlefield Gallery (Manchester), ICA (London) and PS1 MoMA (NYC)
Residencies/fellowships include ACW Creative Wales Award (2012), URRA International Residency, Buenos Aires, Argentina (2011), Standpoint Futures, Standpoint Gallery, London (2010), Cove Park, Scotland (2008), Arts Council of England’s International Fellowship at Bunkier Sztuki, Krakow, Poland (2005) and The Wheatley Fellowship at Birmingham Institute of Art and Design (2005)
Permanent public works include commissions for The Welsh Assembly Government, Grizedale Arts, Nottingham Contemporary and Aspex Gallery, Portsmouth.

In 2006 I was lucky enough to go to Costa Rica on honeymoon. It's an amazing place if ever you get the chance to go. Beautiful, peaceful people, with an admirably relaxed attitude towards life and a casual catholicism that is a hangover from the Spanish colonisation of the 16th century. They have this phrase 'Pura Vida' that literally means 'pure life' but is used for everything; to say hello, well done, cheers, great. It's like the catch all phrase for anything positive.

There's also another saying that we were told by a local guy, 'If you have a church, a bar and a football pitch, you have a town.' I've worked with this idea of 'Pura Vida' a couple of times now. In my mind, I've almost invented a faintly-utopian town called Pura Vida, but it's a town that can be mapped on to any place. Kind of like a psychological position, you can choose to live in Pura Vida wherever you are, you just need to know where the nearest church, bar and football pitch are. So what I'm doing with the sign is mapping Pura Vida on to the top of Reykjavik, using the sign as the central spot.

Does that make sense?

On a personal level, I'm not a religious guy and I'm not a strong follower of football, so Pura Vida isn't a particularly personal utopia, but it's really just more about the idea that we can choose to live in our own personal Pura Vida, wherever we are. If you like music, burgers and films, then your Pura Vida will be the local music hall, McDonalds and cinema. I guess it's about taking control and not blaming the world for our dissatisfaction. All of that maybe makes it sound a bit heavy. In so many ways it's just a celebration of simplicity.
May 30th 2014, S Mark Gubb

S Mark Gubb (b.1974) lives and works in Cardiff. Born and raised near Margate, Kent, he works across a range of media incorporating sculpture, video, sound, installation and performance. The subjects for his work are drawn from the social and political culture he grew up in; an equal fascination with things he finds so great and so terrible about the world we live in. This often takes the form of a re-evaluation and re-interpretation of contemporary culture and history, provoking us to consider our contribution to the world we live in.
His work has been widely exhibited in solo and group exhibitions including Turner Contemporary (Margate), Dublin Contemporary, Aspex Gallery (Portsmouth), Postmasters Gallery (NYC), Matthew Bown Gallery (Berlin), Mostyn (Llandudno), Ceri Hand Gallery, (Liverpool), Castlefield Gallery (Manchester), ICA (London) and PS1 MoMA (NYC)
Residencies/fellowships include ACW Creative Wales Award (2012), URRA International Residency, Buenos Aires, Argentina (2011), Standpoint Futures, Standpoint Gallery, London (2010), Cove Park, Scotland (2008), Arts Council of England’s International Fellowship at Bunkier Sztuki, Krakow, Poland (2005) and The Wheatley Fellowship at Birmingham Institute of Art and Design (2005)
Permanent public works include commissions for The Welsh Assembly Government,Grizedale Arts, Nottingham Contemporary and Aspex Gallery, Portsmouth.
http://www.smarkgubb.com

Performance footage, featuring Nicholas Barker (Lock Up, Cradle of Filth, Dimmu Borgir) http://vimeo.com/m/97860566

'Metal Militia', Gymnasium Gallery, Berwick-upon-Tweed, May 31 - Jul 13 http://www.berwickvisualarts.co.uk/whats-on/35/s-mark-gubb-metal-militia

'Metal Militia: The Performance (Featuring Lock-Up's Nicholas Barker)', The Maltings, Berwick-upon-Tweed, June 6, 7pm
http://www.maltingsberwick.co.uk/events/visual/1495

'It All Began with Richard Burton', Whitstable Biennale, Sun June15 

http://www.whitstablebiennale.com/project/it-all-began-with-richard-burton/

Mark’s show will be up until mid December 2014