soft rupture

ned pooler

Surface Tensions Part 2: ‘Contra Culture’


Site-Specific Installation Inside the project space & on building facade on Mill Bay

Saturday 26 September – Sunday 18 October 2020

Thursday to Saturday (and Sunday 18 Oct) 11am – 6pm (pre-booking encouraged)

HOP Projects, 73 Tontine Street

Exhibition Preview:

Friday 25 September 6 – 9pm (Part of Folkestone Last Fridays)


Soft Rupture’ is a body of new work for ST20 commission – a fully immersive site-specific installation that takes over both inside & outside the building, spaces are exaggerated through forced perspective,  interrupting the gallery’s existing architecture through inflated forms, colour and trompe-l’œil. 

Juxtaposing static sculpture and the fluid, chewing gum physics of the Golden Age of Cartoon, Soft Rupture is animation in freeze-frame. It creates a forever-in-stasis diorama, where familiar, household forms are skewed in this stage set and everyday architecture is injected with anthropomorphic gestures. These gestures animate the objects with emotion, transporting them into the foreground. As viewers, we enter the space of the furniture sculptures and exist amongst them, becoming background figures in their story.

Exploring issues of mental health and sensuality through the queer perspective, the world Pooler creates speaks of millennial ennui and anxiety through sculptural performance. These sculptures explore feelings of uncertainty, dejection and confusion experienced through the seemingly never-ending process of learning, life lessons, growing up and the transition into adulthood.


Surface Tensions 2020 presents art that is deeply immersed in the traumas, struggles and violence of our times, from the perspectives of the margins, in a collective act of creative resistance. 

ST20 Part II: ‘Contra Culture’ (May – December 2020) commissions 4 new pieces of sites-specific installations by bringing together international artists: Stefan Bruggëmann, Ned Pooler, Bobbi Cameron and Jaša. 

Emerging from the plight of involuntary isolation, ‘Contra Culture’ constructs a locus of instability and finds fortitude in the perpetual struggle between the inner and outer worlds, navigating the darker recesses of the human psyche against the bifurcating psychosis that permeates the global brain. 

’Contra Culture’ goes against the grain and defies the reactionary logic that exploits uncertainty and anxiety. When art is turning digital, it celebrates physical and material expressions as counterintuitive forms of resistance:

It provokes through surrender and resignation; 

It touches and connects by closing in and retreating into silence;

It reaps the cacophony of rage by creating voids;

It uses humour, absurdity and sensuality to forgo indifference and apathy; 

It breaks out of the architecture of ‘order’ and ‘normality’ to find alternative paths of bewilderment and internal disorientation.


‘Soft Rupture’ is a fully immersive installation that invites you to explore the space both inside and outside the building. In response to the latest government guidelines for social distancing, a max of 3 people are allowed inside the gallery at one time. If you would like to visit the installation, please email us info@hopprojects.org to pre-book a slot. Once inside the gallery, please protect yourself and others by wearing a face covering, and to keep at least 2 meters distance away from one another. Thank you!


Photography: Matt Rowe