Posts Tagged 'installation'

Exhibition: A Map of You at Text Festival, Bury.

I am over the moon to announce I have been asked to exhibit some of my collage series, ‘Leftovers’ at the Text Festival in Bury, Greater Manchester. This is from the site:

The Text Festival in Bury is an internationally recognised event investigating contemporary language art (poetry, text art, sound and media text, live art). Opening on 29 April 2011, the next Festival will be its third manifestation and run into July.

Against the background of global stylistic multiplicity, the use of language spans many artforms and may even be a unifying field of enquiry, a new definition and a new field of international linguistic art practice and dialogue. The Bury Festival is the leading focus of language in 21st Century art.

The Festival specialises in experiments, in new experiences, in performances and exhibitions that mix artforms in ground-breaking combinations that challenge traditional language art boundaries and offer artists a forum for dialogue and exchange of ideas.

Art Monthly commented of the Festival:

“According to Foucault, the singularities that serve
to rupture and renew normative discourse
always emerge from the interstices – in other words, where nobody is looking. Almost certainly nobody was looking
in the direction of Bury for the emergence of this significant project…”

My work will be exhibited in a show curated by Philip Davenport called A Map of You, part of the Text Festival. Tony Trehy is the overall curator of the Text Festival. The show features truly innovative writers and artists from past and present. I’m very moved to be part of it:

Bury’s newest museum opens its fascinating space and collection to interventions and installations secreted as playful gestures and paratactic commentary. The show will feature works by Matt Dalby, Márton Koppány, Liz Colini, Peter Jaeger & Kaz, Bob Cobbing, participants in the Map of You Project and many more.

Curated by:

Phil Davenport

Commissioned by:

Text Festival & Bury Transport Museum

Ticket Prices:

Adult: £2.80; Child: £1.90; Concession: £1.90;Venue:

Bury Transport Museum

Castlecroft Road

Bury

http://www.eastlancsrailway.org.uk/bury-transport-museum-2/

Collage part 2

I decided to try using red ink as a background possibly or to draw on the text pieces. This turned out to be too cheesy. A bad idea. The simplicity of the pieces and the text was enough and my text written in ink was too literal. These were some of the words I had eaten in the performance. The quietness and subtlety of eating harsh words in the performance works far better than them spelled out in red ink. Too literal and vulgar. Not that I mind vulgar in general but not for this. There is subtlety, haphazardness and complexity that I’m very pleased with. I am always afraid of text in art as I never know whether it actually works. My fear of text is I suppose apt for me to work with as my work deals with fear, my own fears in general. This is quite a scary project for me. I’m happy with the work being made in a haphazard way as I get very nervous about choosing words. I’m terrified of poetry, not reading it but writing it. I think I would drive myself insane if I went at it too much. I prefer the breathing space I’m allowed with visual work as every day it’s something new. It’s not so concrete as the symbol of the word. I’m very free in what I say verbally, but I’m too anxious about writing things down, although I am writing this. I’m not so scared of prose, I have been writing some biographical stuff recently that I have very much enjoyed and been more frank than I ever have before. There are definitely uses for writing for me. I’ve realised I can talk about the wider things, the surface things but the deeper, finer and less graspable/tangible emotional things I need visual work to express. Some people can attain this through words, like poets. My visual work is my poetry I suppose. I would like it to be. I realised reading Heart of Darkness recently how deeply moving and visceral words can be. I forget sometimes, although that probably sounds ridiculous to a lot of people. It’s just like a long poem. Some of it has deeply anti racist sentiment for the time, but due to the time, the descriptive stuff is racist.

My pledge – Manchester Artist’s Bonfire 28th January 2011

Click for the Manchester Artist’s Bonfire site.
Details of artwork:
I will burn a red wax skull that was part of my degree show installation at University of Salford in 2009. The installation was a personal take on the vanitas still life painting tradition which used the skull to remind us of our mortality and the futility of material things, a Memento mori. I used wax because of its transient nature but used rough layers of vibrant reds to create a rock-like but visceral effect.
The installation consisted of red wax objects on a dressing table opposite a TV on static which was the only light source and its subtle hum and hiss created an intense ‘silence’. My intention was to create a past state of being, a relic of the fear and isolation I felt I had largely overcome.
Pledge:
Vanitas literally means ‘emptiness’. The skull wakes us up; it makes us feel more alive. Burning the skull will be an act of defiance against capitalism and Coalition oppression, the promise of fulfilment through buying and financial gain, manipulating our desires and creative drives to do so. I could sell the skull but instead I choose to burn it; it will be a sacrificial act. I will destroy in order to create, to make art no matter how throttled we become through poverty: by any means necessary.
The skull also represents a crippling fear of mortality I once had, although I will not/cannot abandon this fear altogether as it is vital to my drive to create. The action will be a catharsis on many levels.

Cuts to public funds will make art and artists in this country suffer, but the positive out of the negative, the antithesis to the thesis, could reconnect us with our instinctive creative ‘will’. We may become more in touch with what really moves us irrelevant of monetary concerns. Poverty can inspire, but this is not to condone the impoverishing of artists and the lack of respect this culture has for us as the cuts demonstrate. I hope that we realise we can overcome these obstacles if we maintain our individual and collective passion to create and spur each other on, if we keep on keepin’ on. I hope you will join me in the Danse Macabre.

Project Potato

I discovered a stray potato in my vegetable cupboard. I found it quite disturbing. The fur-like texture on the growths and the vein-like qualities and spiny bits are all quite unsettling. The potato part looked like the shrivelled head of some sort of creepy octopus. It was inspirational. I didn’t know what I would end up with but I knew I wanted to use it for something. I thought I would try taking a mould of it and cast it in plaster.

I knew the tentacles would be a nightmare to mould but I managed to get some tiny fragments which look quite beautiful in delicate plaster.

Mute. Performance Saturday 2nd October.

Mute is part of the Free for Arts Festival which is being held in a number of locations around central Manchester.

I’ll be performing in collaboration with Jennifer again with our plaster balls. The event will start at 8pm in Soup Kitchen in the Northern Quarter of Manchester. Also performing are Gary Fisher, Edwyn Butler, Nicholas Donovan and Daniel Watson.

Bury ‘Wakes’ Performance with Jennifer McDonald

The highlight was when this guy started joining in at the end…

The performance clip is around 6 minutes in. A 10 minute video will be uploaded soon.

It was a novel experience performing on a Saturday afternoon in a grand and echoey Victorian art gallery… A bit of a difference to our last performance in a room above a boozy cafe on a Thursday evening.

The layout of the event was like a market with stalls along both sides and artists groups plying their wares. Some were present, some just appearing on small lonely screens on big wooden tables. The cold light of day and the fluidity of people coming in and out and walking around the huge space meant we didn’t feel like we had an audience in the same way as at Fuel. It felt looser. We decided to take our time and play for around half an hour, which we did.

It’s an odd experience performing improvised music/sound as your concept of time changes vastly. It almost feels strained to take your time. You feel you want to throw yourself into it. You do want this to happen, but if it happens too quickly, you don’t explore the sounds enough. You have to have some restraint to get the most out of your playing. I think the Victorian vibe helped keep the wolf from the door. This is sometimes not as enjoyable as just going ‘mental’ but the recordings always prove it pays off. I don’t care too much about the audience as you’ll never please everyone, especially if you try to, but you want to do your best and get the most out of the performance when you do it. That is also for the audiences benefit. I suppose if you please yourself, you can’t not please some. Performance is about playing for me. Art making is about playing. It was great at the end of the performance we got a young chap joining in smashing the bits up and really getting into it. We thought we might have really annoyed the staff at Bury but they were really good about it.

Magnus Quaife made a video that shows a gathering of sorts, although I didn’t really notice much at the time. The video is really well shot and I really want to get it on youtube but I’m a little inept at video technology. I’ll get it done soon.

Performance at Bury Art Gallery Saturday 4th September

I’m performing with Jennifer McDonald again using plaster spheres at Bury Art Gallery for When Artists Take Over:

For the first time in Bury Art Gallery’s history, the largest exhibition space
is being completely handed over to practicing local and international
contemporary artists for short experimental residencies. Installations will
showcase works by Magnus Quaife, Sarah Sanders and Irene Barberis. These
exhibitions and interventions are of short duration and unpredictable, so please
ring the Gallery on 0161 253 5878 to check timings and availability.

The event is on from 12-4pm. We’re performing between 1 and 2.


Louise Woodcock

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