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Exhibition Title

Fran Hayes
 - Thick, Stretchy, Sticky Space


10 May - 14 July 2024
Press View: Wednesday 8 May 3 - 6pm RSVP
Preview: Thursday 9 May 7 - 10pm
IMT Unit 2/210 Cambridge Heath Road, London E2 9NQ

IMT Gallery is proud to present the first solo exhibition by emerging interdisciplinary artist Fran
Hayes. Thick, Stretchy, Sticky Space features digital paintings and video works that delve into
speculative landscapes, inspired by damaged ecologies, science-fiction, and the uncanny; all
viewed through a profoundly human lens.

Stumbling into technotime you are confronted by amorphous energies, they are whispering sweet
nothings - forgotten melodies, dark truths, hidden narratives - digital paintings spill from screens,
illuminating elastic futures.

i have seen it before but forgot…

lightning strikes
sequins pour down my legs
their tiny plastic bodies scream in bliss

memories are lost to tides
whispered secrets pass from tongue to tongue
pain and ecstasy continue their slowdance
i cease, in effect, to be part of humankind

Tidal child, your power is waxing, you have eddied out but will return, surging back with power
and treasures
Riches abounding

time slides irrevocably into the past
hold on like it’s greasy
or let go like it scalds

The embroidered sampler, early nesting, now
cast aside, unfinished, the Y stemless, suspended,
Incomplete, Y for You, my incomplete, part-formed Pisces fish
excuses excuses
         (she excuses herself)
She was convulsing me, twisting me without heed like screwed paper before the fire
Knifing her way through the net of my caul
Swimming free, breaking the sac, slippering from me on a tide of amniotic piss

My body taking over, instinct ruling as I squat
Feral, panting, red-smeared, feet washed by my own blood
My body spitting her out like a pip
Or is she spurning my safety, ripe and ready to fall?
she is a woman now
she stretches leisurely into all corners of the human condition
i fall through her pelvic floor

A yowl, a shit, her father’s best shoes bespoiled
I collapse, spent, sated, finished, flaccid belly, torn skin
I keen a welcome, as she gazed sightless, blue marble eyes and black hair
Alien child, yet more familiar than myself

The fisherwife comes to stitch me, needle-bright pain in a field of blood
Puckering an added contour on the map of my skin
Remaining to this day, a private souvenir

softly, she thawed
bruised by moss she grew into the world
She is mine, yet not mine: together we are enmeshed in Earth’s fabric

she was marinating in her own flesh, her own skin
desperate to escape the monotony of life yet unsure how to do so

she makes art and then she does not
she crumbles in on herself
          (i crumble in on myself)
                   [we crumble in on ourselves]
how can you go from thinking something is forever
to thinking that it never even existed at all
and feel nothing

The woods where you ran now echo with silence
The birds call, the beech mast crunches underfoot, underfeet
Undefeated, it waits for your return

how can one process anything when life moves so terrifyingly fast
viewing a dozen world disasters concurrently from the convenience of your palm
twisted truths leak from black mirrors but stay a comfortable distance from the pits of despair that
grow in our bellies

a broken fish is spat out onto the shore
a feathered heart beats faithfully against the changing night
i can only be what i am
yet believe me i try to be more

my heart is heavy
a clenched fist holding onto old memories
i just want arms around me
i don’t care whose
          (as long as they’re yours)

A little hedgepig, so spiky, defensive yet dripping vulnerables
Bright and hot and sudden as lava spits
My arms encircle, but they are not the right ones
Yet they will do, for now

Text by Fran and Ruth Hayes



Fran Hayes is a multidisciplinary artist based in London working predominantly in Blender, an
open-source 3D modelling software, expanding into writing, sculpture and installation. Fran
creates speculative landscapes and immersive environments that explore damaged ecologies,
science-fiction and the uncanny through a fundamentally human lens.

Fran graduated from a BA in Fine Art from Central Saint Martins in 2022, and has exhibited locally
and internationally, most recently in collaboration with Ika Schwander for Rooms Festival,
Maastricht, The Netherlands in January 2024. She has also organised and curated exhibitions
including ‘through the eyes of a pigeon’ (2023) in Cape Town, South Africa, for which she made a
collaborative installation with Nick Rushton, and ‘The Way We Were Tenderly’ (2023), London, with
Alice Palm.

Other significant exhibitions include: Sluice Lisbon: Territory (2022), a group show in Lima, Peru
(2020), and UnFabricated at DContemporary (2021). Fran collaborated with established
multimedia artist Maggie Roberts to make the digital work ‘ADA’ whose first iteration has shown at
IMT Gallery, GIANT Gallery and the London Art Fair 2022.


To coincide with Thick, Stretchy, Sticky Space we will be participating in this year’s London Gallery
Weekend from 31 May - 2 June. Join us at IMT on Saturday 1 June from 7 - 10pm, and celebrate the
launch of AFriend, a new lifestyle street label by IMT Gallery's director, Lindsay Friend.

Get your dancing shoes on for an evening of fresh sounds from emerging artists and DJs, and
explore the brand’s first collection including wearable art featuring collaborations with artists Fran
Hayes, Kenji Lim and more.

IMT Gallery is local and global in its approach to contemporary art exhibition making. Alongside its
exhibition programme the gallery represents a core group of emerging to established artists,
facilities workshops offering a unique approach to engaging with art; and commissions
experimental writing on critical contemporary art.

Routledge recently published Contemporary Exhibition-Making and Management: Curating IMT
Gallery as a Hybrid Space, a book about IMT written by the gallery’s long-term curator (2005 -
2023) Mark Rohtmaa-Jackson. The book is part of a series on the Global Creative Economy, edited
by Aleksandar Brki?.

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