Panacea
Michael Pinsky, Zoë Walker & Neil Bromwich
26 July – 10 September 2005

Private View – Monday 25 July, 6.00 – 7.30pm, Artist’s Talk  6.30pm

Panacea: the art of wellbeing
is an artist-led collaboration by Neil Bromwich, Zoë Walker and Michael Pinsky. Touring internationally, the project will be launched in the UK for the first time at the John Hansard Gallery.

Panacea is an evolving, expandable and travelling artwork, designed to function as a universal formula to cure social, economic and political problems. Striking a fine balance between naïve optimism and ironic critique, the artists have created a thought-provoking and humorous comment on society’s increasingly untenable expectation of the artist as social reformer, economic revitaliser and catalyst for all things good.
 
At the core of the project is a model of a fantasy Health Park, which is constructed from medical packaging and bandages – offering both generic and specific solutions to health and lifestyle problems. The model will change and develop during the tour, acting as a microcosm that reflects the whole project. Developed from this model are number of artworks including: Friendly Frontier by Walker & Bromwich, an 11-metre long, hand-sewn, inflatable mountain range that acts as a buoyancy aid for countries in conflict, with emergency slides to bridge international borderlines, Life Pulse, by Michael Pinsky, a sculpture that registers and illuminates visitors’ heartbeats to create ever-changing rhythms and patterns of light. Echoing the medical methods of checking one’s health through monitoring the heart rate, Life Pulse, with its clean, clinical aesthetic, can be used by visitors to check their state of health on arrival and compare it with their increased wellbeing on departure.  
 
Full of subtleties and surprises, Panacea is a pioneering trans-disciplinary project that will reach out to audiences well beyond existing contemporary art enthusiasts. Combining medical approaches with artistic propositions, this exhibition poses to holistically change the texture of culture, acting as a catalyst for social and political change to create a state of wellbeing.

Panacea has recently received a major National Touring Award from Arts Council England.

For further information, please contact Nicky Balfour
' 023 8059 4661
7 023 8059 4192 * njb@soton.ac.uk

John Hansard Gallery
University of Southampton
Highfield
Southampton
SO17 1BJ
023 8059 2158
info@hansardgallery.org.uk
www.hansardgallery.org.uk

Michael Pinsky, Life Pulse, 2004. Photo courtesy CCC, Tours