Select your favorite artist by clicking on the Vote button. The winner of the public vote will receive £5,000 for production costs towards their work, project or exhibition in order to support their future artistic endeavours. The winner will be announced on 23rd November.

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Emma Critchley

Brighton, United Kingdom

My practice uses the underwater environment as a space to explore the human condition. I am interested in the reciprocal relationship between the body and the animate environment that surrounds it, focusing on the continual exchange that takes place between these two spaces: a relationship that becomes heightened when immersed within the thick liquidity of water. When submerged beneath the water’s surface there is a complete detachment from the every day and the focus falls on the present moment. There is a shift in the way we relate to our bodies, which demands that we realign ourselves with sight, sound breath and movement. It is a change, which necessitates both a physical and mental realignment thus altering our basic structure of being. Being immersed underwater is a state that can only ever be transitory as it is dictated by our bodily limits; the duration can only be sustained by the length of a breath. I am interested in the temporality that this creates, which becomes corporeal as opposed to mechanical. Throughout history people have trained their bodies and developed technologies in the quest to extend time underwater, yet it remains a space where our existence can never be permanent.