“I wanted 1 hour with oral without + kissing and a bit of sex at the end... Unfortunately Saskia did not kiss at all and the oral was very stop/start whilst she dried her tongue and my old man every minute (I had showered beforehand) she obviously did not like oral without. I could tell she didn't really want to be there and by 20mins was pretty frustrated.”
“Representation of the world, like the world itself, is the work of men; they describe it from their own point of view, which they confuse with absolute truth”
Simone de Beauvoir
Deliberately misunderstanding convention or creating new and unnecessary artifice, Saskia presents us with interstitial glitches where we see glimpses of the ideological underlay. With risible melodrama, akin to John Carpenter’s ‘They Live’, Takens-Milne upends familiar domestic cultural products - jigsaws, cross-stitch samplers, holiday snaps - exploring their role as conduits for dominant ideologies such as patriarchy and neo-liberalism.
Saskia Takens-Milne’s work is the grit in the vaseline.
"The first act of violence that patriarchy demands of males is not violence toward women. Instead patriarchy demands of all males that they engage in acts of psychic self-mutilation, that they kill off the emotional parts of themselves."
Ultimately the pieces are tragic, doomed interventions. Steeped in bathos, they say a big ‘fuck you’ to ‘the system’ whilst simultaneously accepting their impotence. Counter-cultural resistance is especially fragile/precarious because of the ease with which it will be reabsorbed into the dominant cultural narrative, leaving no trace of its critical intention eg a woman screaming at a sexual violation titillates the very men it intends to shame.
CV & Education
Born 1977, London, UK
2006 Chelsea College of Art, London. PG Dip Fine Art.
2000 Glasgow School of Art, Scotland. BA(Hons) Fine Art – Photography.
Catherine, Miniature Mobile Gallery, London. (A portable gallery exhibiting art to passengers on the London Underground. Conceived and curated by Soheila Sokhanvari)
Absent, Stairwell Gallery, Angel, London.
Absent, Kingsgate Gallery, West Hampstead, London. Supported by Grants for the Arts (The Arts Council England) and London Borough of Camden.
Blue Elephant Theatre, Southwark, London. Supported by Grants for the Arts (The Arts Council England)
Start Gallery, Fulham, London.
Retreat from Bouguereau, Quaker Gallery, Soho, London. Sponsored by Gordon’s Gin
‘I Want a Twenty-Four-Hour Truce During Which There Is No Rape’, Quaker Gallery, Soho, London.
SELECTED GROUP EXHIBITIONS/SCREENINGS
35th Annual Open Exhibition. Southwark Park Galleries, London
Direct Input. Muddy Yard Space, London
Whitechapel Open - Digital Exhibit, Whitechapel Gallery, Whitechapel, London
Fundada Artists’ Film Festival (FAFF), Square Chapel, Halifax, UK.
Brixton’s Smallest Cinema, Art in a Van, Brixton, London.
Antimatter Film Festival, Victoria, BC, Canada. www.agit-prop.com
Vision in the Nunnery, The Nunnery, Bow, London
I To The Telescope, Deleadus, Clerkenwell, London.
First London International Creative Competition (LICC).
Growbag, The Art Pavilion, Mile End, London.
I’ll Show You Mine, Cheslea College of Art and Design, London.
The Figure and the Face, Orleans House Gallery, Richmond.
Art, Age and Gender (on tour) Usher Gallery, Lincoln, The Corn Exchange and New Greenham Gallery, Newbury.
fEAST, Field Gallery, Brick Lane, London. Organised by Inside Arts.
Art, Age and Gender, Orleans House Gallery, Richmond.
Bread and Roses, London Road Gallery, Northwich.
Kilter, Disused Factory, Glasgow.
Newberry Gallery, Glasgow.
AWARDS AND RESIDENCIES
Art Angel Everywhere. Long-listed Artist.
Artist in Residence. Artspace, Galway, Ireland.
Beck's Futures Nominee.
Artist in Residence, Greenbanks Elderly Care Facility.
Jerwood Platform. Nominee.
Jock McPhee prize for excellence in photography, Glasgow.