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  • Future

    GUEST PROJECTS: Susan Conte / Kristin Luke, Autumn Collapse

    Preview June 27th 2014 6-9pm + afterparty

    Autumn Collapse Image 675x900

    Autumn Collapse

    A project by Kristin Luke and Susan Conte
    Preview Jun 27th 6pm til late
    Installation continues Jun 28th – Jul 26th
    Open Wed-Sat 12-6pm

     

     

    A four week collaborative installation which evolves alongside a collection of semi-autobiographical virtual texts. Fantasies of divisions between the artist and author, the work, and the spectator, blur and collapse. Objects, language, and personal expression become increasingly fragmented and dispersed whilst elements of a synechdotal subjectivity fall in and out of props, backdrops, and performances.

    To follow their process visit: http://autumncollapse.tumblr.com/

    ENCLAVE GALLERY: Roderich Maclachlan, Disappearance

    Preview June 27th 2014 6-9pm + afterparty

    Disappearance Chimp in Lens crop

    Roderick Maclachlan
    Disappearance
    Preview Jun 27th 6pm til late
    Installation continues Jun 28th – Jul 26th
    Open Wed-Sat 12-6pm

    Roderick Maclachlan’s new work, Disappearance, extends his established analogue media practice to work with the physics of light in order to explore the mutability of the archive and the image as object.

    ARCHIVE COMING SOON.

    Today

    The Directors’ Cut 2. 8
    Third Text 10
    • Victory Press

      Victory press is a small publisher & printer. We print using a Risograph RZ570 digital duplicator with 10 colours. We publish limited edition artist books and print editions using various print methods.

      Read more..

      Victory press is a small publisher & printer. We print using a Risograph RZ570 digital duplicator with ten colours. We publish limited edition artist books and print editions using various print methods.

      Victory Press Elliott Denny Enclave DeptfordRisograph printing is a vibrant and economical method of producing anything from books to artist prints. It sits in the realm somewhere between screen print and offset lithography but with a unique aesthetic.

      We can print on most uncoated papers. We only have a limited range of stock and order in for most big jobs. We would prefer to test the stock you have in mind first. As soy ink can struggle to dry on certain stocks. We can also print on envelopes

      As the complexity of all print jobs vary we have no rigid price list, we quote based on each job individually. We are happy to provide you with quote, Please email with the following specified: Description, number of colours, quantity, intended paper weight, paper size.

      hello@victorypress.co.uk
      www.victorypress.co.uk

      Background image: Tom Edwards, Nine Tales, 4 & 5 colour Riso, 285 X 390mm. Edition of 100

    • Tom Edwards Nine Tales 4 & 5 colour Riso 285 X 390mm Victory Press
    • Occupy My Time: TROPISM, Karin Janssen & Lorraine Robbins

      8 May - 7 June, private view 8 May 6-9pm

      8 May – 7 June 2014
      Private View 8 May 6 pm – 9 pm
      SLAM evening 30 May 6 pm – 9 pm

      Read more..

      8 May – 7 June 2014
      Private View 8 May 6 pm – 9 pm
      SLAM evening 30 May 6 pm – 9 pm

      Lorraine_Robbins.The_Sweetness_of_the_Marital_Yoke_and_other_bedtime_stories_fdf130Reaching, second by second, imperceptibly upwards, the tender leaves of the growing plant know not what compels them, only the desire for sunlight. Tropism brings together artists Janssen and Robbins in an arresting new exhibition at Occupy My Time Gallery in Deptford. Although working in different mediums, the two artists share a common methodology. Each with a considered starting point, the work growing out, quite spontaneously, sprawling its way across the page, or the floor, attracting and repelling in turns, but each element of the work necessitating the next move or growth. Figurative forms merge with abstract, colours often clash and shout, but each clings to the other, in a desperate embrace.

      KARIN JANSSEN
      Creating large, seductive drawings that lure us in and then confront with our own abject inner-self, Janssen shows us how our basest emotions transfigure the face we present to the world. Using deliciously wrought images from nature, fluid lines and confident colour, strange forms emerge and crawl daringly close to us.
      Dividing her time between her gallery in Hackney and exhibiting in both London and the Netherlands, Dutch artist Janssen’s powerful drawings have attracted much praise and recent press attention (featuring on the cover of the East End Review and in the Hackney Citizen). For Tropism, Janssen has selected work from her series Silent Screams in the Valley of Uncanniness.

      LORRAINE ROBBINS
      Using a combination of found and made objects, Robbins creates sculptures that draw reference from pop culture and art history (imagine seventies Star Trek meets Renaissance Florence). Her sculptures, in this case a piece entitled Your Salty Dirge, which sprawls across the gallery floor, often appear benign, even appealing in their sugar-candy colours, but look a bit closer and a darker subtext is revealed. Everyday hopes and aspirations are re-imagined in a ruinous, tragicomic staging. In drawing attention to these traditions and beliefs, the precarious fabrication begins to show, ceremony and romance becoming the punch line of a bawdy joke.

      Having shown both artists before, gallery director Sue Cohen recognized the potential for the duo to work together and create a mesmeric but challenging exhibition. Tropism is showing at Occupy My Time Gallery, The Enclave, Deptford 8th May – 7th June 2014.

    • IMG_7284_LOW_RES
    • The Directors’ Cut 2.

      27 June to 19 July, Thursday to Saturday, 12.30-5.30pm

      ‘Of our Methods of Recognising one another’ is the second in an annual series of shows by the artist-curators Iavor Lubomirov and Bella Easton, directors LUBOMIROV-EASTON and ALISN. Once a year the artist duo represent themselves at their artist-run project space in a series entitled The Directors’ Cut.

      Read more..

      Of our Methods of Recognising one another

      Iavor Lubomirov and Bella Easton

      Of our Methods of Recognising one another is the second in an annual series of shows by the artist-curators Iavor Lubomirov and Bella Easton, directors LUBOMIROV-EASTON and ALISN. Once a year the artist duo represent themselves at their artist-run project space in a series entitled The Directors’ Cut.

      Like many artists who curate and organise, Lubomirov and Easton’s projects are an extension of their practice and a way to investigate their concerns through means larger than their own artworks. Since the first Directors’ Cut in 2013, the duo have conceived and evolved a series of off-site projects, including Collateral Drawing, The Opinion Makers and Home.

      Launched in Plymouth at the start of 2014 and travelling to Athens earlier this summer, Collateral Drawing has been an important investigative tool into their own residual mark-making. In ‘Home’, shown at Christie’s in October 2013, they pushed the notion of the artist’s edition, through hand-made unique multiples. The second Directors’ Cut includes works made for these projects by Lubomirov and Easton, some of which have not previously been shown in London.

      Lubomirov and Easton’s work is radically different in conception, execution and material, but achieves a harmony through a common use of the grid. They both create structure by cutting and assembling large numbers of hand-made multiples, albeit in different ways. For both the need for a precise structure is not an end in itself, but a way of containing and inviting chance, just beyond the edge of human ability. They are thus able to ask relevant questions about making that are not couched in nostalgia, but are part of a larger resurgent discussion about craftsmanship and the role of the artist in the production of work.

      In Easton’s looming wall panels, a system of geometry orders the repetition of hundreds of hand-painted or printed patterns in a way that establishes a connection between images of architectural spaces and the pattern of the work itself.

      Lubomirov grows sculptural pieces through a slow and laborious process of layering of grids drawn on thin materials, creating a spatial distortion of flat geometry.

    • Of our methods...
    • The Groundnut (residency)

      The Groundnut are in residence at Enclave for seven months until July 31st 2014.

      *Please note Curatorial Timeshare have now left Enclave*

      Read more..

      groundnut 2*Please note Curatorial Timeshare have now left Enclave*

      The Groundnut is a London-based partnership involving Folayemi Brown, Duval Timothy, and Jacob Fodio Todd. We organise events, and produce innovative physical and digital content concerning our mutual interests, specifically revolving around food. We all have mixed African and European heritage and this greatly influences what we do.

      The Groundnut are in residency at Enclave until July 31st 2014.

      thegroundnut@gmail.com
      www.thegroundnut.co.uk

    • lemons groundnut
    • Third Text

      Ongoing

      Third Text is a highly-regarded bi-monthly journal offering critical perspectives on art and culture.

      www.thirdtext.org

      Read more..

      Third Text enclave deptford

      www.thirdtext.org
      thirdtext@btconnect.com

      Third Text has established its key position at the critical interface of contemporary art practice and theory with specific focus on the impact of ‘globalization’. In its twenty-six year history the journal has created an archive of knowledge production to benefit artists, researchers and art historians worldwide.

      Third Text took a pioneering interest in the exclusionary zones of ‘centre’ and ‘periphery’ and challenged Eurocentric and ethnocentric notions inherent to aesthetic criteria that marginalized or neglected the work of culturally diverse contemporary artists. The journal moved on to develop its postcolonial discourse in the direction of institutional critique, and it now seeks to address the complex cultural realities that are emerging and competing for recognition in the globalized artworld.

      The crucial issue today is the critical appraisal of contemporary art in the context of this globalized artworld, without a centre, and yet one where the spectre of neocolonialism is ever present. What are the commercial and institutional forces that are shaping art history today? Who is deciding on the present ‘value’ of art and for which audience?

      Third Text has adapted its goals to the changing conditions of the global artworld but its fundamental aim remains the advancement of contemporary art practice in the context of of the art market and institutional forces that obstruct a truly critical perspective on the reception and evaluation of art.

      Third Text has been instrumental in launching a series of independent art journals: Third Text Asia in Pakistan; Third Text Africa in South Africa, Tercer Texto in Peru, and the forthcoming Terceiro Texto in Brazil. Third Text has also published numerous books on art, under its former Kala Press and current Third Text Publications imprints, and is planning further publications.

      Six issues are published annually, online and in print by Routledge, Taylor & Francis, UK. The journal invites contributions to its special and general issues.

       

    • Third Text May 2013 Enclave Deptford
    • DIVUS London: The Ten Commandments and Seven Deadly Sins

      Preview April 25th, 7-9pm

      Preview April 25th, 7-9pm
      Exhibition continues April 26th – June 28th
      Open Wednesday – Saturday, 12 – 6 pm

      Read more..

      Preview April 25th, 7-9pm
      Exhibition continues April 26th – June 28th
      Open Wednesday – Saturday, 12 – 6 pm

      An exhibition of enlarged prints from Moses Reisenauer’s pocket Ten Commandments with occasional commentary, plus a promise of The Seven Deadly Sins.

      DIVUS website

      Böhmen und Mähren Kunst – Stories from the sewer of Europe

      The Czech Republic is the polar opposite of all real or imagined inhospitable lands. There is nothing here that might inspire respect for nature or fear of its elements. It is simply an adorable country, an enlarged village rock garden – if you have those things in Germany and know what they are. The Czech Republic is a former part of a now-defunct, repeatedly failed state that eagerly anticipated its demise. Its next-to-last resurrection, which was in exchange for the life of just one Jew, Hilsner, led to the Second World War. If there had been no Czecho-Slovakia (and later the Czech Republic), it would have been possible to build a motorway from Berlin straight to Munich, the world would have never heard the term “humanitarian bombing”, and robots would still be called automatons. The most important figures in modern Czech history are tatíček (“little father”), a third-rate philosopher in riding boots surrounded by naked children, Hitler, Mr. Werich, the two-headed monster Klavel, and agent 009 Schwartsumberg.

      So let’s only talk about this accursed region without using its name, about this crater that looks as if it had been carved by a meteorite, whose margins provide natural defense but also isolation. Rivers flow from it as from a cracked jar, dirty, acidic and steaming because the Czechs produce electricity by burning old rags from the mounds of garbage cheaply acquired from the rich Germans. The Czechs are known as the only Slavs to hide their crimes against humanity. They have stuck their own foot in extreme unction, and yet they hand out advice until the hyenas start to choke with laughter. They hate all the surrounding tribes, except for the Roma, whom they consider to be descendents of the Romanians – who refused to occupy the crater in 1968. The Roma don’t have to work; they can drink, dance, and swear in their own language. Czechs don’t dance. And foreigners in general are not popular – except for Americans, whom they have never seen but they like the flag.

      Although in such an environment art flourishes about as much as in the Gaza Strip, every now and then an artist appears who is willing to work in public despite the unctuous admiration of the uneducated and vulgar populace. One such public-yet-invisible artist is Pavel Reisenauer.

      A grumpy loner, a skeptical mystic and a Christian in a tight spot

      “Pavel Reisenauer was born on 7 October 1961 in Prague, where he lives to this day. After graduating from secondary school, he held various jobs (including work as a furnaceman and security guard) that allowed him to work on his paintings. He has three daughters. He has been employed by the weekly Respekt magazine since 1991, and has published a book, 209 Drawings and 33 Paintings. He has held numerous exhibitions, and in order to avoid succumbing to this temptation in the future, he recently set up a website gallery of his work” – which is also where this short bio comes from: www.pavelreisenauer.cz.

      Like his web gallery, Reisenauer’s work can be divided into two areas. The first includes journalistic illustrations for Respekt, the Saturday insert “Orientation” for the Lidové noviny newspaper, and book illustrations for various publishers. Thanks to his illustrations – with their characteristic style and unrelenting humor – he is known to the Czech public if not by name then definitely from his drawings on the cover of these publications. The second area of his work are his non-commissioned drawings and paintings, through which we can get to know him in his own world: “Where solitude beginneth there endeth the market-place; and where the market-place endeth, there endeth also the noise of the great actors, and the buzzing of the poison-flies.” Aliens, the underworld, suburban landscapes, daughters, out-of-place animals, sex, alcohol, and above all loneliness. Also, the streets of Reisenauer’s favorite neighborhood, Prague’s Nusle district, where tourists and developers are still rare, and so it remains a haven for outsiders and crumbling tenements in a sold-out city. In recent years, he has preferred to work in series that give him greater freedom. The pictures in each series share a common motif, technique, use of color and style. These include the computer drawings from The Ten Commandments and The Seven Deadly Sins, as well as the temperas from Streets and the recently completed Nusle.

      A visitation every day

      This artist – who has successfully avoided public recognition and exhibits only rarely – has decided to bring to Berlin his highly personal interpretation of the Ten Commandments. Reisenauer has taken these basic rules for Jews and Christians (as contained in the Catholic catechism) and transformed them in his image, knocked them from the diction of church language and down to the ground of his reality: God appears as Superman, divine punishment falls upon a desolate suburban street, graffiti artists spray-paint a Jesus fish on the hood of a car, a legless mother has been taken on an outing in her wheelchair; we see evidence of suicide (far more common than murder), a slightly vulgar drawing of a penis attacking Venus, a black hand painted on the wall of a ransacked house, a skull that looks as if it has been pulled from a mass grave, its mouth grown shut, a woman depicted as a childishly gussied up and romantically enamored monkey, and superhumanly oversized mafiosi who remain unseen by passers-by. When asked where why he felt the need to confront these two traditional Christian subjects, Pavel Reisenauer says: “Because in the end I am a Christian, primarily one in a tight spot.”

      To be continued…
      And this is just the beginning. Another series is in the works – The Seven Deadly Sins. It will be exhibited in London too.

      At this exhibition, Reisenauer will present his latest as-yet-unexhibited series, The Seven Deadly Sins. Here, Reisenauer focuses his critical and ironical gaze on himself. The theme required a more simplified approach as compared to the previous series: the square-format paintings are made in black on a white background, emphasised at most with foreboding details in a devilish red that is the only similarity with the previous series. With just one exception, the digital images’ main subject is the artist himself. His figure, accompanied by just its shadow, moves through a space without background, accompanied only by symbols or attributes of the relevant sin: a proud magician (more like a con-artist juggler of nothingness in a raggedy bathrobe and worn t-shirt); a harried money-chaser; a dreamer drooling for things he doesn’t have; an unhappy and not too attractive lecher with a strangely non-prurient expression; a drunkard who has been transformed into his bottle; a raffish loner and implacable ironist within whom pride struggles with insecurity and mystical faith with disillusionment, skepticism and resignation: the final image shows him in the position that he himself would probably like to adopt forever.

    • THE TEN COMMANDMENTS AND SEVEN DEADLY SINS, Enclave
    • Autumn Collapse / A project by Kristin Luke and Susan Conte

      Preview June 27th, 6pm til late

      A project by Kristin Luke and Susan Conte
      Table of Contents June 27th 6pm til late
      Installation continues to July 26th

      Read more..

      Autumn Collapse Image 675x900

      A project by Kristin Luke and Susan Conte
      Table of Contents June 27th 6pm til late
      Installation continues to Aug 2nd
      SPECIAL EVENTS:
      Reading Movie Group –
      Wednesday July 16th, 2-6pm
      Kawaii Bento workshop – July 19th 2-4pm

      Kristin Luke and Susan Conte will write an autobiographical collection of texts that depict New York City and Los Angeles via London as a backdrop. The text will be a product of their immediate personal experiences informed by a romantic portrayal of NYC and LA’s collective history through landscape, architecture and culture. This written narrative will intersect with objects made and installed within the space.

      Autumn Collapse will be the resulting installation which physically traces this literary space. Each week, an event will take place in the gallery: a reading group, workshops, a performance, a dinner. Participants will include both gallery visitors and invited guests. They will be asked to contribute, augment, and become variously implicated within the narrative, whether they become characters, distanced critics, or narrators. These interventions will directly feed into the exhibition installation itself, the installation becoming the physical counterpart to the texts that exist virtually, on Enclave’s online gallery platform. Texts and installation will in some ways coalesce, in others be jarringly inconsistent, but will always remain entangled.

      Autumn Collapse proposes that the moment of personal expression marks a porousness between the internal ‘I’ and the exterior. As the locations of where our subjectivity is formed become increasingly fragmented, dispersed, virtual, a reevaluation of this porousness becomes necessary. The distinctions between caricature, illustration, autobiography, poeticism, and personal truth are muddled. Building on the notion of the Romantic ironic literary/artistic subject, Autumn Collapse models a new framework for how artist/author, the work, and the spectator can operate, where each of these elements are simultaneously unfinished parts and autonomous wholes – an irresolvable synecdoche. Autumn Collapse will hang in the balance here.

      www.EnclaveProjects.com

    • Autumn Collapse Image 675x900
    • news of the world: Equal Goes it Loose

      Preview June 27th 7pm

      Preview June 27th 7pm

      At news of the world space, 19 artists from Hamburg (Hfbk-Hamburg, Werner Büttner/Markus Vater Klasse) create, in a poetic and concrete way, a space that is not there: the garage.

      Read more..

      Preview June 27th 7pm

      At news of the world space, 19 artists from Hamburg (Hfbk-Hamburg, Werner Büttner/Markus Vater Klasse) create, in a poetic and concrete way, a space that is not there: the garage.

      Paintings that grow out of the darkness of an abandoned space, oil smell, collages of pinup photography associated with mechanics, fast cars, broken toys, expensive bike, dirt and sawdust, the roaming barn of free-range masculinity;

      Music sessions, amateur rehearsals, homemade inventions and pioneering experiments, the high tech start-up lab, the first step to going global perhaps;

      I like it that my garage doesn’t have a window. It is well insulated and well secured. What I keep here is nobody’s business. In my garage it is September all year. Of the eight garages mine is the fourth one. I wouldn’t like to swap it. Basically they are all the same, but I like mine best.

      What meaning can the garage have in one’s life? A nostalgic place, a place of memories, strange findings, sinister secrets. Domestic storage and post-surrealist assemblage of stuff for which there’s no room elsewhere. A house for a car; the architectural space of the modern age which architecture forgot. Suburban life, boredom, passion, playground and carbon monoxide suicides.

      Equal goes it loose, the title given by the artists to the exhibition, is the example often used of a typical ‘Lübke English’ phrase. ‘Lübke English’ refers to nonsensical English sentences created through a word-by-word translation of German expressions, without mediation and with no regard for syntax, cultural or linguistic context.

      Equal goes it loose is the mistranslation of the German expression which means…’Soon it will start’… a possible reference to the function of the garage and at the same time the situation of the artists involved.

      Other literal translations are also at play:
      -the amalgamation of autonomous artworks under the ‘garage’ theme and their decoding provided by this text;
      -the equivalence of the exhibition space –or for that matter, the artist studio- as the ‘garage’ of the creative urban class;
      -the resort to art production as a universal pidgin language.

      But the title issues a warning against any automatic interpretations and suggests other keys to the viewer: try poetry, nonsense, naivety, intuition!

    • enclave
      • THIS FRIDAY JULY 25TH Autumn Collapse / Book End + Last Friday at Enclave A closing performance within the final installation of Kristin Luke and Susan Conte’s month-long residency at Enclave. There will be a performance/reading at 8pm. NOW.. Autumn Collapse A project by Kristin Luke and Susan Conte. A collaborative installation which evolves alongside a collection of semi-autobiographical virtual texts. Fantasies of divisions between the artist and author, the work, and the spectator, blur and collapse. Objects, language, and personal expression become increasingly fragmented and dispersed whilst elements of a synechdotal subjectivity fall in and out of props, backdrops, and performances.  More info... To follow their process visit: www.autumncollapse.tumblr.com  NOW.. Roderick Maclachlan, Disappearance (until July 26th)  Maclachlan’s installations explore materiality, entropy and cycles of time; evoking states somehow suspended between past, present and future. Disappearance is a new episcopic (opaque object) projection work featuring a portable TV and an excerpt from Life On Earth (BBC 1979). More info...          

        //NEWS//
        Project space available at Enclave 

        From October 1st 2014 a project space will be available for rent within the Enclave infrastructure. This is an opportunity for ambitious individuals/groups of artists/curators running public contemporary art programmes to have a long term project space in the supportive environment of Enclave alongside a group of exciting peers.
        groundnut, enclaveEnclave is made up of the Enclave Gallery, the Machine Party club room, Enclave Guest Projects and seven independent project spaces currently including – news of the world (The Centre of Attention), Divus London, Third Text, The Groundnut (residency), Lubomirov-Easton and Victory Press. Past project spaces have included Curatorial Timeshare, Anarch and ATOI&CULL.
        For more information on how to apply, for rates and general enquiries, email info@enclaveprojects.com with “Enclave Project Space” as the subject header. There is no specific deadline, however, interested parties are advised to apply as soon as possible (NB applications for artist studios will not be accepted).
        Download - Project Space Application pack.

        //////////////////////////////////////////////

        Enclave OPEN SUBMISSION
        Deadline: ongoing – apply now!

        Resolution Way gate sign (image Lawrence Lek)We are pleased to announce an opportunity for young or established curators, artists and collectives to submit exhibition proposals or longer term projects/programmes for the Enclave Open Submission Space. We are looking to select a small number of high quality proposals to be programmed over the next ten months and into the future.
        Proposals will be reviewed and selected by the Director Anthony Gross and the Curator Lucy A Sames and will be chosen on artistic merit and critical engagement. There is no fee to apply.
        All enquiries to info@EnclaveProjects.com.
        Download - Enclave Open Submission Application Pack

        //////////////////////////////////////////////

        Enclave MACHINE PARTY

        Enclave Machine Party Deptford Lucy A Sames Anthony GrossMACHINE PARTY will be open every week Wednesday-Saturday 12-6pm during exhibitions (call 0208 694 1644 to check) for coffee, wifi, hanging out and free work space.

        MACHINE PARTY is the clubroom and command-centre for Enclave operations, it is a flexible infrastructure/hangout with exhibition and performance space, Enclave’s curatorial office, communal working/meeting space, future artist residency module, pop-up charity fundraising speakeasy bar… plus free wifi and cheap coffee.

        Machine Party Enclave Deptford

        MACHINE PARTY is available for hire for parties and one off events. Contact us for info and rates.

      Woodgrain
    • ENCLAVE GALLERY: Roderick Maclachlan, Disappearance

      Preview June 27th

      Preview Friday June 27th 6pm til late
      Exhibition continues June 28th – July 26th
      Open Wed-Sat 12-6pm

      Maclachlan’s installations explore materiality, entropy and cycles of time; evoking states somehow suspended between past, present and future. Disappearance is a new episcopic (opaque object) projection work featuring a portable TV and an excerpt from Life On Earth (BBC 1979).

      Read more..

      Preview Friday June 27th 6pm til late
      Exhibition continues June 28th – July 26th
      Open Wed-Sat 12-6pm

      Maclachlan’s installations explore materiality, entropy and cycles of time; evoking states somehow suspended between past, present and future. Disappearance is a new episcopic (opaque object) projection work featuring a portable TV and an excerpt from Life On Earth (BBC 1979).
      The combining of light, movement, objects and architecture in his practice reflect a preoccupation with the complementary relationships between mind and body, perception and imagination, the physical and the ethereal.

      Roderick Maclachlan (born 1974) lives and works in Bristol.
      Recent shows include Life’s An Illusion Love Is A Dream, Liverpool Royal Standard (2013) and Passing The Time, Motorcade/Flashparade, Bristol (2013). Maclachlan’s installation works have been experienced at One-on-One Festival, Battersea Arts Centre (2011) Inbetween Time, Arnolfini (2010), and Small World Fair at Metal in Southend-on-Sea (2010). Collaborations include working with artist Harminder Judge on Do What Thou Wilt, Spill Festival, The Barbican (2011) and with composer Roly Porter on Fall Back at Faster than Sound, Snape, Suffolk (2011).

      Exhibition text by Angela Piccini, Department of Film & Television, University of Bristol:

      Roderick Maclachlan’s new work, Disappearance, extends his established analogue media practice (Paint Can Reflected, 2008) to work with the physics of light in order to explore the mutability of the archive and the image as object. Maclachlan presents a materialist montage that collides the perfect repetition of the video loop with analogue projection, both inviting and disrupting a return to a McLuhanesque medium as message. Despite the heavy material presence of the television-light-lens-video-sound assemblage and the rough-and-ready feel of the projection booth that provide the entry point into the work, the ghostly images that emerge transform that assemblage into image. That is, Disappearance resolves the mass of the television set into the seeming weightlessness of the mirrored image, which parallels the transformation of the mass of human, animal and plant bodies in the forest into televisual images. But Maclachlan insists upon a further turn in that these images don’t speak of representational regimes but instead, through the specific glassy and monumental quality of the reflected image, return the viewer to consider the image as object. As such, Disappearance responds to Hito Steyerl’s suggestion that ‘if identification is to go anywhere, it has to be with [the] material aspect of the image, with the image as thing, not as representation’ (2010).

      In animating the archive as a ‘radioactive fossil’ (Marks 2000: 84-85) Maclachlan’s use of pre-cinema technology precisely calls up the tension between our proximity to the image as thing and the distance between our bodies and the entwined bodies of Attenborough and the apes. It is that distance, the projected image’s inability to deliver what we thought for so long that it promised – the presence of that which is ‘represented’ – that enacts a different set of politically charged presences. The projected bodies of the forest, the animals and the youthful Attenborough have already disappeared beneath political strife, war, environmental devastation, the temporality of the event itself. Yet, these bodies remain bound up in and performed by the stubborn persistence of a period Toshiba portable TV and the archive, a video trace only made possible by the geo-political and military-industrial-entertainment energies that continue to destroy these habitats. Media presence kills the things it loves and yet, problematically, it also offers new possibilities through their objectification.

      Where the television image once promised endless reproduction, here the projected image of the screen image has a more complicated relationship with presence and absence. The projected bodies – on screen and of screen – threaten to disappear beneath the layered constellation of the circles of light that are both the agents, and the material trace, of the event of projection. That this is an ongoing event of disappearance rather than a completed act is signaled by a series of movements – once again, both on and of the image-object. The slow left-right swivel of the television set on its pedestal becomes a projected disorientation, a subtle unsettling. While what is seen is a projected image, the audio is emitted from the television set itself and that separation of signal and noise points to the impossible possibility of being in two places at once that media offers. Zooms, pans, low-angle shots and the fragmented geographies of the edited sequence visually challenge any sense of naturalist space.

      There are multiple gestures that point to perhaps the only presence that can make a difference here: the entanglement and ‘carnal density’ of ‘the body filmed, the embodied viewer / artist / filmmaker, …the body of the film itself’ (Russell 1999: 160-62) and the technological bodies in which these are all bound up and which can only be activated in the space of the event. Repeated shots of apes and monkeys reaching out to grab trees, leaves, to groom one another and to enfold Attenborough call up McLuhan’s ‘extensions of man’ and invite comparison with our own acts of viewing and participation. Attenborough refers to the ‘warm body of the mother’ ape, which is reflected in the warm body of the television. However, just as we can’t feel the warmth of the mother ape herself, the only television we can approach here is the cold projected image on the wall. Promises of intimacy are offered and then refused. Attenborough tells us that ‘there is more meaning in the exchanging of a glance with a gorilla than any other animal I know’. But only Attenborough knows this. Where the image-object can return a look of sorts, the only direct exchange of glances here is with other humans in the gallery space. Disappearance’s deliberate distancing of the representational narrative of the video from its projection and its staging of the immediate proximity of technologies and image-objects demands that the viewer orientates herself to a world in which bodies are deliberately complex, entangled assemblages and the boundaries between them are uncertain.

      References

      McLuhan, Marshall. 2001 [1964] Understanding Media: The Extensions of Man Routledge
      Marks, Laura U. 2000. The Skin of the Film: Intercultural Cinema, Embodiment, and the Senses. Duke University Press.
      Russell, Catherine. 1999. Experimental Ethnography. Duke University Press
      Steyerl, Hito. 2010. A Thing Like You and Me. e-flux 15

       

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