This page documents my degree show project, exhibited at SQUEEZE DEGREE SHOW, 2018
Le Rocher, April 2018
The rock is a vehicle to explore fantasy narrative. The rock is accessible, ordinary and unknown. The rock has had many different narratives attached to it. Many more could be attached. Today it is the must-have kitchen accessory.
QUALITY, VALUE, CONVENIENCE, 2018
The kitchen showroom is a theatre, yet teleshopping channels ooze authenticity. Teleshopping channels attempt to be relatable and achievable, yet use such exaggerated characteristics that make them feel so phony. This video aims to be humourous, sarcastic and uncomfortable. The uncomfortableness of watching something drawn out is important. The script is an amalgamation of dialogue taken out of QVC videos and an invented script, spoken by a professional voice actress. Intense camera zooms speak of teleshopping, long shots attempt to be meditative, allowing the audience to relax, taking in the hypnotic motions of dishwashing. These long silent scenes are perfectly eery in their gallery setting, with the voiced parts an interruption and jolt back to the strange reality created.
Within this work there is a criticism of mindless belief, it's commenting on the absurdity of teleshopping but acknowledging that it somehow works. The knowing way that television like QVC is consumed with the idea that it is stupid or over-the-top, yet through this ‘ironic’ consumption, the purpose of teleshopping channels is still getting through to us. Mocking JML video displays at Wilko, but being unable to tear yourself away. In this way it becomes a fictional novel or film; we watch QVC or JML with the same opinion we would a sci-fi film. Quality, Value, Convenience stems from a bewilderment with the way society loves to be fooled. We love jokes, we love fiction, we love advertisements. I’m interested in the bizarreness of the combined ‘realism’ and accuracy of QVC versus its acute fakeness. The packaged rocks form a secondary acknowledgment of this idea of the accessibility and 'cheapness' of QVC. They are displayed like Hotwheels cars or Maltesers would be in a supermarket. The highly considered methods of display feel so forced.
Errors are an important part of teleshopping channels. Quality, Value, Convenience contains many glitches, shakes and breakages. There is a limit to these because of the need for the video to generally feel sleek and professional but the errors demonstrate this interest in the weirdness and liveness of teleshopping. Jarring camera movements, awkward acting in a state of the art kitchen. Errors allow the audience to see the staged-ness. They are reminded of the fakery that takes place.
Quality, Value, Convenience was recorded in a kitchen showroom called Arlington Interiors, I wanted to use a kitchen that looked modern.
Theatre is a longstanding theme throughout my practice. The power of the theatre and the icons of that; the lights, curtains and stage.
This is an earlier version of Quality, Value, Convenience. It was shot in a domestic kitchen. They emphasise the idea of the fake and the set, I realised it needed to take place in something more obviously weird. I also like the spaceship-style of high gloss modern kitchens.
PORTABLE THEATRE, February 2018
The blue velvet curtains represent the grandeur of theatre. The heavy weight of history and power that the theatre instills as a cultural venue.
The design for the anchors desk of Squeeze TV came from the first line of the manifesto. The rest of the show acts as comic relief to defuse the fire.
the world is on fire, water is no longer enough
The combination of the humour, television set and Jenny and Sam's script were influential to Quality, Value, Convenience.
Performer in LECTURE THEATRE by David Steans and Hardeep Pandhal, May 2018
These are flyers created for the notice board.
The strange scene in a teleshopping video of detached hands fondling an object with floating information shouting in the foreground.
Still from SQUEEZE TV
SALON DE TATOUAGE
A collaborative piece of work considering the stage and the performance.
The booth acts as a stage, the creation of a stage allows for storytelling and theatre to take place.
CONVERSATION SERIES: INSTALLATION VS. SCENOGRAPHY
The beginning part of a series of workshops/meetings with BA Fine Art students and MA Performance Design students about the merging of the disciplines and the distinction between installation and scenography.
We discussed the current trends in art, as a whole and at Leeds, with the interplay between fantasy and storytelling in contemporary art.
Sam Lanchin, Lauren Perry, Ekaterina Chokova and Rochyne McNulty participated in the meeting.
The series will continue after university.
Cheryl's Funeral by Chloe Mayo
As a performer, I was asked to complete a reading in memory of Cheryl.
The Gucci AW18 show came to my attention through a Facebook Live streaming of the catwalk taking place is a surgical theatre. It also adopted hyper-real SFX makeup and prosthetics and an alien/industrial sound. I am interested in how Gucci adopts the characteristics of a bizarre set as a way to present luxury goods.
OXYGEN OF TERROR, Calum Bowden
A video work at the New Contemporaries which used the musical to discuss radicalism. The video was highly produced but extremely playful. Its this mix of technology, theatricality and important topic that interested me.
The bronze egg rests on the base of the desk, it is weighted in one end by bronze powder.
MYR, January 2018
An attempt at the creation of a bizarre space which was playful, educational and professional. I wanted to have this clinical aesthetic that provided the museological atmosphere to lift the rock to academic sanctity and at the same time be relaxed and playful enough to emphasise that the history of the rock might not be true.
Photos taken during the last year of strange plants, collections and funfairs.
3D Scan of rock, May 2018
The audio of Quality, Value, Convenience utilises a professional voice-over actress. Her voice at some points feels robotic.
The idea of paying a professional feels like an attempt to access value. This in turn relates back to the value associated with theatre. The voice-over accesses the power of television and authority of adverts.
My interest in fantasy stems from the idea that in a time of political, societal, economic turmoil, we turn to something other-worldly. This is something I discussed in my dissertation.
I also think that seeing the fantastical in the everyday is interesting. QVC and JML represent part of this, the everydayness of teleshopping channels versus the weirdness of them is something that interests me. To actually watch a QVC programme means to watch something so fake and staged that somehow captures you (if not you, then millions of others).
This interest also stems from an acknowledgment of the trend in art of making stories, using theatrical techniques or elements taken out of fantasy to either act as a distraction or create a supposed light-hearted arena to discuss something bigger.
CHERYL'S DEAD: IT'S BEEN A ROCKY ROAD
A collaborative piece by Chloe Mayo and I.
Finally, the mystery surrounding the circumstance of our beloved Cheryl's death are discovered.
PREEZE, May 2018
A strange, unknown world or dimension has been explored. The explorers return to our world with nuggets of data. Scientists spend decades attempting to read this information. Eventually what is revealed are these videos.
AFTER THE EXPLORATION OF
19 - 23 MARCH
Recording of the exhibition space.
Fantasy narratives play a part in my practice. After the exploration of used this idea of an exhibition of information collected about an unknown space. I am interested in how society loves to hear stories. Novels like Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy, Brave New World and The Time Machine triggered the movement from rocks to rocks with a narrative.
These scientists amassed all of the equipment they could find to present all the info they collected. Hence, what could seem like a random collection of screens, is actually a demonstration of the resourcefulness of these scientists and the strength of their desire to present their findings publicly.
Discovered in the Aegean period, the ponte occulte océanique éponges survived the Bronze Age to be discovered by the Aztec peoples in 200 BC.
As a significant component of the nutrition chain of the Pachycephalosaurus dinosaurs. Ingested exclusively in the third week of life, the ponte occulte océanique éponges remain in the pyloric canal of the secondary stomach for 33 and a ½ months before excretion.
After 3000 years trapped in fossilised pebble, the ponte occulte océanique éponges was discovered and exhibited in the International Museum of Earthly Matter in Lanzarote, they suspiciously vanished without trace in what is considered the greatest storm ever, The Great Storm of 1987. The ponte occulte océanique éponges were deposited in an unknown location, thought to be gone forever.
Only recently scientists, researchers and exobiologists have discovered the mystery behind these treasures. Extra-terrestrial secretion accumulated in the microscopic cracks of the ponte occulte océanique éponges proves, beyond doubt, that the ponte occulte océanique éponges travelled back to earth in the brains of the first alien life to enter the Earth’s atmosphere; The Middleton Family in 2001.
It is believed that this led to the development of what we now call today the Internet.
Ponté Occult Océanique Eponge,
The Geography Cabinet contained les rochers made of different substances:
Ambergis, les calanques de Marseille, 24 Carat gold, 84% Lindt Dark Chocolate, Resin and silver powder, ensomatic secretion galatia 1.
GEOGRAPHY CABINET, November 2017
Humour is important in my work. One of the pieces I presented for MYR was a cast of a key holder rock. The object is a copy x 3. The cast object copies the rock, it takes the form of rock. The plaster object is a copy of that copy. However, the original is also still authentic and original.
Quality, Value, Convenience uses colours names from the Dulux paint range. The weirdness and humour of these names compared with the everyday normality of colour names interests me.
I KILLED MY MOTHER WITH A ROCK, November 2017
A precursor to CHERYL'S DEAD. The silicon rock makes a perfect murder weapon.
A defense barrier against slugs.
French has held influence on my work since my year in Marseille. I became aware of the English association with French and value. It feels museological. Its the language of food, of art. I love the idea that you add "le" to something and it is lifted, even if in a sarcastic tone. I like playing with this playful idea of authority through the use of a French word (meaning 'the rock') pronounced badly.
Similarly to French, the idea of the ease at which value can be accrued, and therefore the lack of validity it has, interests me.