Directed by the prolific New York-based photographer and documentary filmmaker Cheryl Dunn, Making Spaces takes a look behind the scenes of set designer Es Devlin's immersive installation Mirror Maze and features interviews with other creators whose groundbreaking use of space make them the exemplary innovators of today. Get to know more about them below.
"I work with artists to make things possible. With the gallery, I work predominantly with new art and emerging artists. I don't like to be held into one specific category or other. There are a lot of great women artists making extraordinary contributions not just to art being made today, but art that will be seen in 100 years time. There's a great quote by Gertrude Stein that goes something like, ‘what young artists need is not criticism, but praise. They know well enough what is wrong with their work, what they don't know is what is right about it."
Janina Pedan is the London-based set designer whose extraordinary touch can be felt on sets far and wide throughout the fashion world.
"I was born in the Ukraine, my family moved to Sweden when I was six, just before the fall of the Soviet Union. Moving from one culture to another, you don't take the structures about how things should be done so seriously because from a very young age I had the experience of it being done in a completely different way in a different place. With set designing, you have take a risk and to try things beyond your competence, that’s how you move forward. My main inspiration comes from outside of art - from nature and science. I've always been really sensitive to objects, to environments. I find it impossible to live in a place which is devoid of any sensory pleasure somehow."
Architect and designer Pernilla Ohrstedt’s practice sees her working seamlessly across the architecture, design, art and fashion worlds.
"While I was studying at Central St. Martins I discovered the many ways architecture could be like art. Architecture is, by its nature, an experimental field, because you're always creating spaces for new situations. You just have to get on with it, get it created and get it out there. The architecture I do today is really about performance – all projects are performance pieces. I think there's a kind of empowerment in owning your surroundings or even understanding that you can transform your surroundings."
New York-based Grace Miceli is an illustrator and curator of the online exhibition space, Art Baby Gallery, which she founded in 2011.
"The primary focus of Art Baby is to feature emerging, traditionally under-represented artists. When you're 21 and don't have any money, you can't open a space. What I was looking for didn't already exist, so I just decided that I was going to do it myself and the internet was just a way for me to easily do that. As I’ve evolved as an artist and a curator, I'm more interested in the relationship between online and offline. I want there to be a fluid relationship between that because my generation goes back and forth between those lives constantly. Women artists of my generation have grown up online with this greater sense of solidarity and community that we've been able to find that surpasses geographic location."
Assemble are the London-based Turner Prize winning collective who work across the fields of architecture, art, and design.
"We work on quite a broad range of projects: we’re a collective working in the architecture world, although we're not architects and we don't brand ourselves as things. When it comes to experimenting, so many of the exciting things happen at moments of failure. When something goes what might be perceived as wrong is when you actually begin to start seeing new possibilities. Part of the ability to be creative is the knowledge that you can't be perfect. Understanding that something that is not about wrong and rights, but is about a process of things happening one after another which you can begin to develop and work on, is really fundamental to understanding what it is to be creative."
Xaviera Simmons is the multidisciplinary contemporary artist from New York whose work incorporates performance, photography, video, sound, sculpture and installation.
"I make so many different types of works because I feel very much awake to a creative flow in the environment. There's nothing that can pass me by at this moment in my life that doesn't stimulate some creative expression. As I mature as an artist, I think about how I can go beyond myself and take risks in a way that will benefit other generations. I want to make a world where young women can feel like they can make a living where they don't have to make sacrifices."