This is the first UK solo exhibition by Finnish artist Enni-Kukka Tuomala, whose vision is to transform empathy from an individual feeling to a collective and radical power.
In this exhibition Tuomala examines what empathy means in 2021, in a post-Brexit, post-covid, post-colonial Britain. She looks at what role empathy can play in helping us re-enter public life and rediscover physical closeness with each other. Her installation makes empathy, an often abstract and intangible feeling, into a physical and tangible form we can see and feel.
Tuomala will ask us to consider:
Is there space left for empathy?
Can we re-learn to be physically close?
What lives in the invisible spaces between us?
Where is the line between public and private space now?
How could we practice being together?
What will it take to make us feel safe with each other again?
For years Tuomala has been exploring the spaces between people, investigating the public, social, personal and intimate distances between us and how they influence our abilities to meaningfully connect with one another. She looks to understand why the unoccupied space between us is primarily defined as a 'negative space' through the absence of physical entities – as opposed to 'positive space', defined through the existence of emotional entities – Tuomala hopes to reframe how we occupy and share space.