Rebecca Moss is an artist (b.1991, Essex, UK) who critically examines heroic narratives in relation to landscape. Taking inspiration from slapstick and absurd comedy, Moss stages anti-monumental interventions into her environment, exploring de-centred subjectivities. While she is inspired by the site-responsive gestures and approach of Psychogeographic and Situationist practice, she notes that there is a lack of feminist voices heard within this discourse. Disturbing clichéd associations of the feminine with passivity and beauty, she humorously emphasises an embodied and reciprocal exchange with the landscape.
Her work can manifest across a variety of media, but often takes the form of short edited videos, where she constructs scenarios for the camera and performs with props. The works consider physical and emotional boundaries between body and landscape and have variously been described as poems, episodes, scenes and vignettes. Moss values the open space around her gestures: the works may initially appear chaotic but they are very precise in their composition.
The artist grew up, and is currently based, between Essex and London, where the Thames flows out to the North Sea. While this flat, marshy landscape has been described as a ‘dustbin of London’ and ‘industrial wasteland,’ it has a rich experimental history of radical politics, architecture and philosophies, and has profoundly shaped the artist's approach to landscape.
Writing for the Future Generation Art Prize, 2017, the curator Anna Smolak described: ‘Rebecca Moss is interested in moments of disruption, chaos and failure (…) Seemingly haphazard and unprocessed – but in fact deliberately executed – her gestures subversively set the ridiculous and banal against the monumental and sublime.’