Stick a fork in it features the work of Francis Olvez-Wilshaw, the fourth exchange student from the Royal College of Art (RCA) in London to be hosted by the Studio Art MFA program at The University of Texas at Austin. The exchange is a competitive program, awarding a residency abroad to a single RCA student and a single UT Austin student. Olvez-Wilshaw earned his bachelor’s degree in sculpture from the Camberwell College of Art and is in his second year of graduate study in sculpture at the RCA. Olvez-Wilshaw uses his sculpture to look at models and bodies of economic and political power.
The artist states, “At this particular moment, the world sees an increasing number of changes to beliefs and social systems in which the realm of sports has come to offer refuge and a simple model for lifestyle, behavior and relationships. Sport espouses values that are now being inserted into politics, business and family. One yearns to belong to something bigger then one’s self. Power is achieved through this collectivism, a power equated to an individual’s self-worth and control within one’s own personal sphere. Our collectivism is being defined more by what we are against, rather than what we are for. Conflict and antagonism, born from a mutated form of binary competition, is now our discourse.”