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Syndicate is a program of events featuring a range of artists, curators and architects, who have been invited to participate, collaborate and engage with the gallery space over a fortnight in December. The Syndicate program offers the gallery space over to others to re-visit, stage and realise projects. Beyond this there is no defining remit.
Upstairs features a film by the artist Ben Rivers being played for the duration of the program. Rivers engages the viewer with his theatrically shot 16mm films. Working with imagery and techniques familiar to ethnographic or documentary films, he uses the personal and surreal to influence his narratives. For Syndicate Rivers presents his 2006 work The Coming Race, where an undulating mass of silhouetted figures are seen in a barren and unforgiving foggy mountain backdrop.
Directed by curator Cylena Simmonds, Butchers Projects have been invited to take over the downstairs of the gallery with the first solo exhibition of Emma Wolukau-Wanambwa and her installation A Brush for Robben Island (2008). Emma Wolukau-Wanambwa is interested in language and representation, particularly in the expression of subjectivity. Her work A Brush for Robben Island is developed from an anecdote about life in the South African prison where between 1961 and 1991, over 3,000 men were imprisoned for their opposition to South Africa's apartheid government. Although subject to a harsh physically repressive regime, the inmates of Robben Island nevertheless developed ingenious strategies to convene and to communicate. Emma Wolukau-Wanambwa's installation re-imagines these prisoners' covert social space, taking as its starting point three seemingly unstable referents: a gesture that was used to mark this site, the sound that gesture produced, and the language that was used to describe it. Sonically alluding to this site and act of resistance, A Brush for Robben Island invites us to consider our relationship with a history that is fragmenting and fading from view.
Syndicate also features performances by a selection of artists in differing contexts and environments. On the opening night Bettina Buck will be re-visiting a performance first enacted a decade prior in 1998. StrokeZoo, 1998, works with limitations and boundaries where instructions and actions question our relationship to the object and subject. Having the opportunity to re-contextualise this work a decade later we are asked to question the recurring themes in Buck's practice and the power of hindsight and continuum from an archived work. Doug Fishbone will also present a work from his lecture series; in his performances the artist more often than not ransacks Google Image Search to illustrate and undermine his arresting, repulsive and undeniably amusing monologues on contemporary media and our cultural, social and political (sub)life.
Flavia Muller Medeiros will be showcasing an adaptation of a recent intimate performance, IRKA, which first took place at her studio. The work features an email conversation, taking place between her and a student of the recently politically exiled university of Belarus, dating to 2004. The performance will feature a re-reading of the email conversation in the guise of a script with an added layer of dislocated sound being played elsewhere in the gallery. For Flavia the refraction of the authorial voice goes through a process of being embedded from voice into text and back into a voice once again.
WITH (withyou.co.uk) provide a range of Life Enhancement Solutions created by a team of agents for their clients. The results of a recent solution DYINGFORIT which took place in the gallery prior to the opening of Syndicate will be viewable. Recently commissioned, the solution features remnants of an act in which an agent attempted to 'pass away' on a clients behalf. Using the forensic science technique Luminol, a flourescent material that 'lights up' hidden traces of blood and organic matter, the gallery will be transformed into part crime scene, part performance documentation.
The Office of Subversive Architecture, an international architecture network, has been invited to intervene in the galleryís window front. The OSA make interventions in the city landscape reacting to a theme, query, or feature using a political and sociological emphasis they bridge the worlds of architecture, installation and intervention to highlight and disrupt our habitual ways of inhabiting the metropolis.
0.2 W/(m²K) a brand new site specific work references a thermal transmittance value.
09.12.2008, 18.30 - 21.00 - Flavia Muller Medeiros
Due to the intimate nature of this work please RSVP to Claire Tibbs at email@example.com if you would like to attend
10.12.2008, 18.30 - 21.00 - PRIVATE VIEW
SYNDICATE & Butchers projects, feat a performance by Doug Fishbone, 19.30
With kind support of Corona Extra.