The term “Parallel Play”, coined by sociologist, Mildred Parten (1929), refers to a phase in early childhood development in which children play independently alongside one another. While the children may not be actively engaged with each other, neither is their play entirely solitary. Absorbed with their own toys, their own game, they are aware of and may be influenced by the separate games of their fellows. Although the individual’s play is (largely) discrete, a broad view of the shared social setting suggests a scene of communal play.
Parallel Play sees three artists, living in different parts of the world, Harald den Breejen (NL), Mani Mazinani (IR/CA) and David Haughey (Ire/UK), tumble into The Dollhouse Space to play. Fortunately, these artists, all of whom are fathers of young children, have recourse to advice from their own very special in-house play experts who, no doubt, will be able to guide them should they find themselves struggling!
And so, spilling their toys into the rooms, The Dollhouse Space welcomes:
Through a combination of sculptural installation, performance and dialogue, Harald den Breejen explores the effects ideas have on people. His works explore what happens when the dryness of analytical thought collides with the comedy that is human intention. His research-based and collaborative approach often combines making with social and curatorial practice.
Harald den Breejen was resident artist at the Rijksakademie, Amsterdam, and studied philosophy at Birkbeck College and King’s College London. He is a founding member of the Centre for Philosophy and Art (London). He lives and works in Amsterdam.
Mani Mazinani was born in Tehran in 1984. Mazinani’s interdisciplinary practice includes installation, video, film, sculpture, photography, multiples, sound, and music. He makes work that connects scale and perception, improvisation and ancient thought. Mazinani has operated Aerophone Recordings, an experimental label for object-based sound works, since 2018. His recent exhibitions and performances include Stories and Storefronts, Toronto (2022); Tate Modern, London (2019, with Michael Snow); The Bentway, Toronto (2018); Tehran International Electronic Music Festival (2017); Suzhou Industrial Park Culture and Arts Centre (2016); Asian Art Museum, San Francisco (2015); and CAB Art Centre, Brussels (2013).
David Haughey (born 1979) is an artist living and working in Belfast, in the North of Ireland. He graduated from Ulster University in 2001, BA (Hons) Fine Art and has shown work in Venice, at La Casa Di Corto Maltese (2011), as well as the Royal Ulster Academy Annual exhibition (2014), and at Void Gallery, Derry, in an exhibition curated by Turner Prize winner Mark Wallinger (2015). David presented a solo exhibition of painting titled “According To Our Historians A Meteorite Fell Hissing" at The Ulster University Art Gallery during January and February 2017. David successfully defended his PhD thesis in April 2021 at The Belfast School of Art, his research explored time and the image in the context of expanded fine art practices, with a particular focus on video and the exhibition. His research and practice has defined a space between the conventions of painting, photography, cinema, installation and digital media. As a teacher, lecturer and tutor with more than 15 years experience, David has worked with students of all ages, teachers, and technical staff and is an Associate Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. David is a member of QSS Studios.