In 2012 I moved from Manchester to Northern Ireland to begin a PhD with Practice at The University of Ulster, Belfast, researching how visual artists are exploiting the emergent potential of social media and the internet; and what impact the hybrid methodologies required to work in this medium are having on material practice. My research so far suggests that the increased use of emergent technology by contemporary fine artists has affected their material practice to such an extent that it represents a paradigm shift in what it means to be an artist.
In my art work I use a variety of materials: wool, text, photography and video to paint and draw with, preferring to use simple readily available materials and processes to explore how value is assigned to materials and processes in Fine Art, employing Guy Debord’s conceptual strategy of détournement which suggests that all elements of the cultural past must be re ‘invested’ or disappear.
In the past I have often worked collaboratively with visual artists, poets and writers, tending to site my art in unusual spaces as a framing device (e.g. churches, museums, streets, rivers). My current focus is on drawing and text particularly: Concrete/Pattern Poetry; calligraphy, early writing and symbolic communication systems (such as ogham, pictish stone carving, and calligraphy); contrasting these ‘slow communication’ methods, some of which can no longer be read, to the ‘rapid communication’ methods of the present day and concepts like the Twitter hash tag, avatars, profiles etc. Will our Facebook and Twitter posts survive as long and will they be readable by future generations?
I made a series of study visits during 2012/13 to view text art in special collections in Manchester Metropolitan University, in London and Ian Hamilton Finlay’s garden at Little Sparta, Scotland. I have also made art work in response to archaeological material in museums throughout the UK (London, Manchester, Birmingham, and Edinburgh and in-situ in Scotland. I now wish to develop this material for exhibition during the residency period.
Another recent project is an ongoing collaboration with Manchester based artist Sarah Sanders. This emerged from discussions during a series of crit sessions, held at Rogue Project Space, Manchester, in 2011-2012 and monthly Skype based conversations on art and learning and have inspired a series of exercises performed on and off-line, exploring how communication is mediated by technology. The results are documented/exhibited in the form of a blog which invites audience participation. This can be viewed at: http://talkingandtext.wordpress.com/
Wylie has regularly exhibited her art work in the UK (Manchester Art Gallery 2003, The Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool Biennial 2004) and further afield (London, New York, Norway, Japan). Her work has featured in e-zines and magazines (cover of the Woman Artists Diary 2000, Stargazy Pie 2008/9 and 2011) and is held in several private collections. For more details visit: http://www.rogueartistsstudios.co.uk