Banana Split: Introducing Kane Applegate

In the lead up to Banana Split, our first RIPE exhibition of the season, we’ll be catching up with each of the artists involved to find out more about their practice and their latest work.

This week we chatted with Kane Applegate, who graduated from Southampton Solent University last year. Kane is a scavenger; his practice is fed by an ever-growing collection of abandoned and abused materials and objects, discarded and disregarded by the citizens of Southampton. Working with these found things, he builds sculptures and structures that explore the notion of three physical forces: balance, compression and tension. In their final form, his sculptures become illusions; the objects, stripped of their function, stack, balance and bend in seemingly impossible ways.

Hi Kane! Last summer you exhibited as part of Ripe Bananas at the Alfred Arcade, what did you exhibit and how was that experience for you?
Last year, Rob Price and I decided to collaborate and join our practices for Ripe Bananas #01, learning about each other’s way of working. We exhibited life size casts of ourselves made from plaster and scrim, and a number of other sculptures and assembled objects. The installation was about our time spent together in the space and an exchange of ideas and methods.

Then, for Ripe Bananas #02 we decided to make a structure on the roof of the Alfred Arcade. We built half a geodesic dome out of recycled pallets. Both exhibitions were a great opportunity to meet new artists from different areas.

What was the last year been like since graduating from university?
I got a job renovating a house and started learning lots of new skills. I threw myself into the job to give myself time to think about how to develop my practice. Working in the Arcade over the winter months gave me the space to think through my ideas and continue making.

What have you seen in the last year that has inspired you?
I recently went to a Mike Nelson exhibition at Tate Britain, which was completely inspiring. I spent hours observing these amazing structures of found objects he’s collected over the years. Also, Doris Salcedo and how she combines objects and Robert Gober manipulating the domestic object.

What have you been working on lately what are you like to exhibit?
I’m obsessed with the idea of stripping an object of its function and letting it become something else. The final form could be an optical illusion, or create a tension in the space it occupies. It might be impossibly bent, or balanced.

Do you have any projects lined up post banana split?
I hoping to take a break from sculpture and really focus on my drawing this year, whilst completing a residency with ‘a space’ at the Hidden Wardrobe.