There’s a very obvious link between yesterday’s work by Anna Barriball and Ceal Floyer’s today, and in that both works use the (now rather old fashioned) technology of a 35mm slide projector, but there are other threads that connect their work, not least a powerful sense of the poetic potential of ordinary things.
There’s a clarity to Ceal’s delivery of concise, often humorous ideas that can make them seem deceptively simple in that they are never quite what they seem, yet never pretend to be anything else. This work, ‘Fallen Star’ (2018), is typical of this deceptive precision - a slide projector projects a solitary star on to the gallery’s ceiling, from where a mirror sends it falling back on to the floor, as if genuinely fallen. It began with the niggle of a Perry Como tune but ends up a long way from the sentimentality that this might imply – the star resolutely unpick-up-able for a rainy day or any other.
We first showed Ceal’s work as part of our series of artist pairings in 2007 in which a simple fluorescent light sculpture by Dan Flavin was joined by her ‘Door’- an illusionistic strip of brilliant white light projected onto a closed door so the light seems to flood from beneath, offering the possibility of a world beyond. In 2011 her contribution to the exhibition ‘Mystics & Rationalists’ also looked to the threshold of a world beyond – by placing a ready-made ‘WELCOME’ doormat at the gallery door, but at the point of exit rather than entrance.