Debris Dance: Danny Leyland

2 - 29 April 2020


We have kneaded bread and knapped flint for thousands of years, 
and very little is left from all the effort



In...ASMR Massage videos, screen-grabbed on my phone, I was attracted to the immense audio-visual tactility of the experience. The way the hands in the video squeeze and rub the elastic orange flesh, the hot, close breath in the voice. The repetitive, vapid, massaging actions of the ASMR videos, caused me to reflect on all the unimaginable history of actions made in the world, from kneading dough, to knapping flint, and weaving cloth. So many lives. 

Presented by Arusha Gallery, Danny Leyland’s Debris Dance explores ideas around action, labour and deed. Through this new body of work, inspired by his time in Varanasi, India, childhood memories, and daily observations, Leyland references philosophy, myth and pop culture in order to find reason and a place for himself within the undulating confusion and inter connectivity of the world.



Danny Leyland (b. 1994) makes work with a visual language informed by a reading of comparative mythology, folklore, mediaeval romance, and archaeology. Sometimes narrative-led, at other times process-led, his work moves cross discipline between painting, printmaking, sculpture, performance and writing. Since graduating from Edinburgh College of Art in 2016 (BA Painting), Danny has exhibited internationally in London, Oxford, Edinburgh, and Thiruvananthapuram, India, with highlights including RSA New Contemporaries (2017), Hospitalfields Graduate Residency (2017) and an EMBASSY off-site project Digging (2018)Alongside producing his own work, Danny directed Vine Box Poetry, a poetry-led event platform in Edinburgh, with funding from the Hope Scott Trust and Scottish Book Trust. Danny now lives and works as an Art and Design Teacher at a Sixth Form College in Cambridge.