We began looking at visual cognition as both subject and object, most important to the performance practitioner and the painter alike, and in particular the aligned works of the artist Claude Monet as Stanhope Forbes’s contemporary in painting. The perceptive qualities achieved through the brush and its form and technique was our starting point. We saw the potential for the making of a work of art that opened up for an audience and ourselves the question of how the artist’s relationship to the object in light through everyday in life could be extended and performed.

‘Catching the eyes’ of the audience can affect or liberate the spectator or ‘audience’ into making their own departure into the story of perception, historically speaking. The relationship to form and colour, the shift of the retinal picture plane of Impressionism to Cubist reconception of modernist ‘volume’ is presented as part of a perceptual period (of history) within the participatory form.

An accessible key to perceptual understanding is thus our aim, we are looking at how the dissolving picture plane reveals further dimensions, not only for ourselves as artists, but importantly for our audience where an important historical snapshot, or insight into the development of cognition is the result. This idea of participatory knowledge and “looking” as a form of cognitive knowledge resonates with the origins of the era that saw the everyday object controversially brought into the formal gallery space for the delight of the viewer. The question of what the viewer experiences, is detailed in this specific performance as the episodic narrative of the picture plane begins and ends in a fictional encounter: that between the artist and the object as ‘readymade’ materialising before us in the South Gallery within the performance space.

During the period of 2004/5 – 2012/ Jane Whitaker and Ken Turner have been brought together in a professional partnership, integral to new forms ‘productions’ and interrogations, focused through their own backgrounds in education. The manner of this particular partnership is instrumental to the making of the new performance, ‘The Object/s of Light in Perception’. The Plymouth Museum and City Art Gallery will host the event in the museum’s South Gallery on Thursday November 22nd (start time 2pm).

Both Jane and Ken have worked extensively in the UK and abroad. Ken has worked in painting and performance separately and with groups from the 50’s to the present day; most well known for his innovative work within the seminal participatory group ‘Action Space’ that placed the construct of social practice at its heart.

Jane has worked extensively in ‘artist led’ teaching and in the developing significance of Performance Art from the 70’s to the present day. The perceptual movement of ‘Performance’ and the relationship of the historical form is a sustained focus. Jane works as a Senior Lecturer in Performance and Visual Art in the School of Art, Design and Media at the University of Brighton.

Ken is currently completing a book that articulates the original social impact and construct of his own practice, in his continuing work as an artist, educator, relevant to the understanding of historical form/s.   

A video of this event can be seen from the link below:





                Artist’s Statement Jane Whitaker and Ken Turner

                Imaginative eye, Eye Projects presents a performance:

               ‘The ‘Object/s of Light in Perception’