Greta Alfaro's rat race for A Very Crafty and Tricky Contrivance at the Fish and Coal Building

By Ben Miller | 15 October 2012
A photo of a woman sitting at a desk in a mock-up disused Edwardian grey wall warehouse
Greta Alfaro, A Very Crafty and Tricky Contrivance (2012). Black and white photograph© Courtesy Greta Alfaro
Exhibition Preview: Greta Alfaro: A Very Crafty and Tricky Contrivance, Fish and Coal Building, London, until October 24 2012

In a ghostly derelict Grade II-listed London building, a rat scurries around. A video camera has been attached to it via a harness, its lens beaming back Edwardian office workers as they go about their business.

The installation is the work of the young Spanish artist Greta Alfaro, created as the final part of a £20,000 scholarship she won as a first-year student at the Royal College of Art. And in a second rodent-based installation, footage recorded by the creature inside a rat-scale recreation of a similar office space plays.

Combined with black and white shots by Alfaro – she graduated from the College with a Masters in Photography – the show compares public perceptions with behind-closed-doors reality. It has been curated by Flora Fairburn, last seen putting on an exhibition of emerging Cuban artists in Havana.

More pictures:

A photo of a hand on top of a red leather bound book inside a dimly-lit drawing room
A specially-created camera device was attached to the rat inside the building© Courtesy Greta Alfaro
A close-up photo from the vantage point of a rat on the floor of a drawing room
Edwardian workers are portrayed in daily life© Courtesy Greta Alfaro
A close-up photo from the vantage point of a rat looking at a man typing in a drawing room
The show is the first UK solo exhibition for Alfaro© Courtesy Greta Alfaro
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