PEBBLE AND AVALANCHES – CROSSLEY GALLERY, DEAN CLOUGH, HALIFAX, 2010
This joint exhibition of ten artists from the University of Lincoln was curated by Clare Charnley and used artworks to draw attention to the complex dynamics of the two-way process of influence between teachers and students of art.
The exhibition included stills from one of my video pieces – ‘Domain of formlessness’ and relates (literally) to the notion of ‘avalanches’ in the title of the exhibition.
The film stemmed from a conversation that started between Steve Dutton and myself about the catastrophes that result from trying to deal with landslides of material from abandoned artistic activities which often end up strewn chaotically across the studio. Dutton and Peacock made a film called ‘Plague-Orgy-Time’ in 1997 and I first saw it in their exhibition ‘Apocatropes’ at the Mappin Gallery in the same year. I was taken by their approach to a ‘series of accretions of things in a space punctuated by scattered evidence of artistic activity’ (Glover, I. 1997).
My film deals with a similar issue but in this case the studio is reduced to a model and artistic activities are miniaturised in a series of ‘Gulliver-esque’ tableaux or enactments – each one punctuated by the close of a stage curtain. In a way my film consciously tends towards ‘the reproduced’, the constructed stage, film or theatre set in its depictions of a series of avalanches and visually references old slapstick humour films in a sequence of ‘vignettes’. The strange beauty of this apparently absurd process experienced in the studio is foregrounded in this ‘homage’.
(Reference: Izi Glover 1997 ‘Musée Imaginaire’ Frieze Issue 34)