Taking a Line for a Walk, 2008
Line Busy (UK), 2011
Conceptual artist Ceal Floyer (born 1968) is celebrated for her deft manoeuvres in everyday situations, testing the slippage between function and implication, the literal and the imagined – reconfiguring familiar objects as sources of surprise and humour.
Providing circuitous guidance around the exhibition is her performative work, Taking a Line for a Walk, which plays on Paul Klee’s 1923 assertion that a drawing should be: “An active line on a walk, moving freely, without goal. A walk for walk’s sake”. After this helpful intervention – marked by the discarded, spent painting machine, typically used to delineate football pitches – Floyer follows this with a note of frustration through Line Busy (UK), a wall of speakers blaring the busy signal of a country-specific failed telephone call. The minimal black line is a visual echo of the engaged tone itself and, like its sister piece, leaves the viewer at a crossroads between pause and uncertainty.