Wastelands is a contemporary Chinese art exhibition of installation, painting, sculpture and film presenting the works of eight artists who all have links to China. The exhibition explores the idea of ‘waste’ as a result of consumption through different landscapes and materials. Ranging from the ‘aesthetic debris’ in the work of Cai Yuan’s cardboard paintings installation to Cao Fei’s film ‘Haze and Fog’, a surreal and abject portrait of an excessively self-consuming Beijing in the form of a zombie movie. Featuring established artists such as the hugely significant figure of Ai Weiwei alongside artists with long-standing practices in the UK, it engages in themes around issues of neo-liberal ideologies, consumption, development and economies of culture.
Light Echos is a project about time, space, light and data, created by Aaron Koblin, founder of Google’s Data Arts Team, and Tool‘s interactive director Ben Tricklebank.
The visitors to the Curve entered a dark environment and were led through the Curve by shifting words mapped onto the gallery floor, line by line, frame by frame, as though moving in space. The journey of visitors was also tracked and further revealed at the end as abstractions.
In March 2015 British Film Institute in collaboration with Electra and Mutek presented Digital Quèbec: a couple of nights with province’s most innovative and experimental A/V creators(line-up)
I got myself in for the last performance that comprised two artists.
Myriam Bleau presented her Soft Revolvers: 4 spinning tops built with clear acrylic, each associated with an ‘instrument’ of some sorts. The tops were equipped with gyroscopes and accelerometers that communicated wirelessly with a computer where the motion data collected (speed, unsteadiness at the end of a spin, acceleration spikes in case of collisions) informed musical algorithms designed in Pure Data. LEDs placed inside the tops illuminate the body of the objects in a precise counterpoint to the music.The positioning of the lights created visually stunning halos around the tops, enhanced by POV effects (persistence of vision). A camera placed above the performance table provided video feed that was subtly manipulated and projected back on the screen behind the artist, making the projections an integral part of the performance.
Le Révélateur (visual artist Sabrina Ratté and electronic music producer Roger Tellier Craig) merged visuals together with a multitude of hybrid sonic textures , the effect being tracks that buzz and hum in glitched-out cacophony, while others incorporate warped sonic bodies through use of Analogue Solutions’ Telemark synth.
RTC:”I was completely obsessed with the development of early computer music and electronic music in the 70s and 80s and, coincidentally Sabrina was also immersed in the history of electronically generated images from that era [..] We were both very interested in the combination of electronic sound and imagery [..] I feel like we finally managed to zero in on this kind of impossible/virtual reality aesthetic we were going for over the past couple of years, and the artwork for Extreme Events, as well as the video for Aftermath Selves really depicts this.
SR: “We’ve been exploring different techniques as well, and one of them was to connect both our modulars together in order to achieve sirect synchronisation between the music and the image. But this is only one aspect of the performance, and it gets mixed with many other images that are not sync by wires or anything. It;s important for me to keep a certain amount of spontaneity in a persotmance, because that’s when interesting accidents have a change to happen”
“Ai Wei Wei became widely known in Britain after his sunflower seeds installation in Tate Modern’s Turbine Hall in 2010. This was the first major institutional survey of his work ever held in the UK and bridged over two decades in his extraordinary career. Curated in collaboration with Ai Weiwei from his studio in Beijing, the RA presented some of his most important works from the time he returned to China from the US in 1993 right up to the present day. Among new works created specifically for the RA, there was a number of large scale installations, as well as works showcasing everything from marble to steel to tea ans glass. With typical boldness, the chosen works explored a multitude of challenging themes, drawing on his own experience to comment on creative freedom, censorship and human rights, as well as examining contemporary Chinese art and society.”
more on https://www.royalacademy.org.uk/articles/tag/ai-weiwei
Ai Wewei instagram https://www.instagram.com/aiww/?hl=en
Not many people attended so I was among lucky few really to see the films on a big screen, as I don’t think there is many events like this. In fact I have been always on a look out for video art festivals in London but everything seems to have gone digital nowadays (with LUX being an exception on occassions). At Videovada I also attended the Analogue Video Workshop (have been looking for something like it for 7 years!!) and the demonstration of Praxis Live, which was aimed at people who had already experimented with the interactive audio-visual software before.
Max Richter 1921
Bruce Neuman – Clown Torture
Tony Hill – A short history of the Wheel
Ai WeiWei- Dumbass (the music video)
Karen Cytter, Video Art Manual
John Wood and Paul Harrison – The Only Other Point
Dryden Goodwin – Linear
George Barber – Waiting for Dave
Hito Steyerl – How not to be seen
Jeremy Deller in collaboration with Jens Petersen (sound designer, Sigur Ross) – English Magic
This was my favourite video, shown on Venice Biennale in 2013