Bea Bonafini’s work transforms an art gallery into a secular chapel

A new exhibition from a very exciting young artist has the ambitious aim of transforming a gallery into a “quasi-domestic space” that explores the idea of a “non-religious chapel”.

Gernam-born, London-based artist Bea Bonafini only graduated from her MA at the Royal College of Art last year, and her solo show at the Zabludowicz Collection, Dovetail’s Nest, aims to examine “the tension between the functional and dysfunctional, order and chaos, interior and exterior”.

It does this through covering her entire space in a carpet created through hand-cut sections of green, pink and blue material that references the 15th century Siena Cathedral’s marble ‘intarsio’ floor, which once showed Biblical battle scenes before time and feet eroded the image and transformed it into a more abstract composition.

In the place of an alter, Bonafini presents a more secular centrepiece in the shape of a large drawing occupying the end wall of the gallery. This was created using a tiled effect from paper shapes, and shows an interior space populated by stacked columns based on the artist’s own sculptures.

Bea Bonafini, Dovetail’s Nest, installation view, Zabludowicz Collection, 2017. Photo: Tim Bowditch

Bea Bonafini, Dovetail’s Nest, installation view, Zabludowicz Collection, 2017. Photo: Tim Bowditch

Bea Bonafini, Dovetail’s Nest, installation view, Zabludowicz Collection, 2017. Photo: Tim Bowditch

Bea Bonafini, Dovetail’s Nest, installation view, Zabludowicz Collection, 2017. Photo: Tim Bowditch

Bea Bonafini, Dovetail’s Nest, installation view, Zabludowicz Collection, 2017. Photo: Tim Bowditch

Bea Bonafini, Dovetail’s Nest, installation view, Zabludowicz Collection, 2017. Photo: Tim Bowditch

Bea Bonafini, Dovetail’s Nest, installation view, Zabludowicz Collection, 2017. Photo: Tim Bowditch

Bea Bonafini, Dovetail’s Nest, installation view, Zabludowicz Collection, 2017. Photo: Tim Bowditch

Bea Bonafini, Dovetail’s Nest, installation view, Zabludowicz Collection, 2017. Photo: Tim Bowditch

Bea Bonafini, Dovetail’s Nest, installation view, Zabludowicz Collection, 2017. Photo: Tim Bowditch

Bea Bonafini, Dovetail’s Nest, installation view, Zabludowicz Collection, 2017. Photo: Tim Bowditch

Bea Bonafini, Dovetail’s Nest, installation view, Zabludowicz Collection, 2017. Photo: Tim Bowditch

Bea Bonafini, Dovetail’s Nest, installation view, Zabludowicz Collection, 2017. Photo: Tim Bowditch

Bea Bonafini, Dovetail’s Nest, installation view, Zabludowicz Collection, 2017. Photo: Tim Bowditch

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