Its difficult enough for any artist to find a place to exhibit their work. Its doubly difficult if you are a student or recent graduate. So if you are a student or recent graduate working in time-based media – no chance! But at least Sean Hawkridge at Static gallery is doing his bit to help. He’s set up a venture called Skylight Projects (no website to link to yet) and last night was their first ‘Thursday Show’ which aims to give artists working in time-based media (video, performance, sound, web-based practice and installation) the chance to air their work to their peers, artists and visionaries (that’s me).
The first exhibit just after entering the gallery was an untitled, mixed media work by Rebecca Key which I think was the empty wine bottles and drinks cartons left over from last weeks Hirst exhibition. Reminiscent of Hirst’s own ‘rubbish’ piece that was binned by a cleaner at the Eyestorm gallery a few years ago. Should have called it ‘After Hirst’.
There were two pieces by Zoe Langdell; a video called ‘Reading Room’ in which fellow students and friends were filmed reading extracts from books and papers. Small sections were at normal speed so I could catch a few words then it would spring into fast-forward mode then back to normal again. The second was a collection of mp3 recordings of the artist’s ‘Degree Diaries’. I put on the headphones and selected some at random.
Rhian Russell’s ‘Untitled’ is a rather cute piece. An old very basic cine projector with the film looped over a reel nailed to an overhead beam is showing a short film onto a very small area of the wall. Its only about 15 x 10 cms and appears to be the artist moving across frosted glass, I could just make out the hands and arms.
‘Easy Listening’ by Gordon Culshaw and Jamie Torode is anything but ‘easy’ listening. A large metal sheet bangs against a rail and the ‘clang’ is amplified through a huge speaker above my head. It keeps on banging because an electric fan is directed at it so its never still. There’s another sheet of metal on the floor to amplify peoples footsteps as they walk in and out and another couple of contraptions for making strange noises. Its a great bit of lo/hi tech interactive fun that looks like it was designed by Heath Robinson.
There’s a ‘Kylie Remix’ video from Medlo (medlo.net) which is just that – a remix of Kylie Minogue video(s) which now I can’t get out of my head!
Sean Hawkridge contributed a work of his own as he wanted to experiment with the latest technology. ‘Aeroplanes Landing’ is a short film taken that morning at Liverpool airport with his mobile phone, then loaded onto the mac laptop and projected onto a screen.
Unfortunately, the show was for one night only. So if you weren’t there, you’ve missed your chance. But, hopefully, the Thursday Show will be a regular event. I’m certainly looking forward to more and the artists can only benefit from the experience.