Rebecca Beinart is an artist, educator and activist based in Nottingham. She graduated from the Fine Art BA at Nottingham Trent University in 2003 and completed and MA in Arts and Ecology at Dartington School of Art in 2008.
Her practice investigates places, and the inhabitants of those places. Over the past years this notion of inhabitants has continually expanded to include current human occupants, ghosts, memories, plants, animals and ideologies. Through repeated experiments and interventions into sites Rebecca seeks to interrupt her own assumptions about a place and understand perspectives she could not see alone. Her work playfully ask serious questions, investigating lines of supply and control, and looking at the way in which certain stories come to dominate our understanding of a place.
Rebecca’s methodologies frequently involve working with others. Sometimes the people she works with are collaborators, partners in imagining and shaping the work from the beginning. Sometimes they accidentally come across her, and are conspirators or witnesses for the duration of an action.
Recent projects include ‘Potion’, a commission for Artsadmin’s Two Degrees festival (June 2011). Investigating plants that occupy the edge between ‘medicine’ and ‘poison’, Potion explores the delicate balance between a substance that can support health and life, or cause illness and death, depending on dosage. For the festival, the project took the form of an intimate guided walk around east London, and a live medicine-making experiment. Potion invites questions of potency, knowledge, power and healing; and the notion of a tipping point which depends fundamentally on a deeper understanding of the living world.
‘Origination’ currently on show at 198 Contemporary Arts and Learning, Brixton. An ongoing collaboration with artist Katy Beinart, exploring themes of migration, family history and identity. The sisters were in residence in Brixton Market, South London throughout May and the material gathered at the market informed artwork created for the exhibition.
Corridor, Bristol (2009)
Exploring the partially buried river Malago in Bristol. Although the route of the river is interrupted, it provides a transect through the city – a line that passes through very different areas of habitation. Rebecca walked the Malago with various companions, each one offering a different way of seeing the river, and revealing the multiple relationships that surround this stretch of water, and the land that borders it. A commission for the Architecture Centre Bristol and Groundwork South West
Sal Sapit Omnia, Darling, South Africa (2010)
The salt wagon is a tool for playfully investigating the naturally occurring Salt Pans around Darling, South Africa – the site where the artist’s Great grandfather started his business on migrating from Lithuania to South Africa. The wagon is designed to conduct experiments in harvesting and preservation: salt is a powerful preservative, both physically and metaphorically.
Potion, London (2011)
Investigating plants that occupy the edge between ‘medicine’ and ‘poison’, Potion explores the delicate balance between a substance that can support health and life, or cause illness and death depending on dosage. Potion took the form of a guided walk and live experiment to extract a potent plant medicine in East London. A commission for Artsadmin’s Two Degrees festival, June 2011.