An assistant is a person (or by extension a device) that helps another person accomplish their goals

Bearspace in association with Peer Sessions, presents an exhibition project entitled The Assistant. From 14th-29th May and 4th-19th June exhibitions will pair up an emerging artist, who will create the artwork, with an established artist who will instruct them. The established artist will send the emerging artist, or assistant, a list of rules one month prior to the exhibition opening, rules which will detail how the established artist wishes the work to be created and/or installed. This blog contains updates on their progress whilst a parallel page collects discussions around the idea of being an assistant and stories shared by other 'assistants' across the arts.

Thursday, 3 June 2010

Blue and Gordon's pre-opening discussion update

Blue > Gordon:

Sure, whenever you can make it over would be fine. These are a few quick snaps I took on my way out the door today. I would say I'm a little more than halfway there on this piece. I've suspended a large turtle shell by rope from the ceiling which is secured to the wall behind it. The underside of the shell has a bony spine which I have carved about 8 additional holes into and strung video cassette tape through .... trailing across the floor into a large pile on the other side which is a combination of the tape and 50 black mesh vests. In the pics they blend into the cassette material unfortunately. I have another 30 cassettes of video material to add to give the sculpture more mass.

Something feels awkward about the installation, but then again the room is a strange shape and the ceiling very low with interference from lighting etc. Perhaps I have done the best I can with the space. I'm wondering if this is enough for the show?! I will have one of the tyres I'm covering with beans (incomplete) on show in the gallery window I've decided. When I go tomorrow perhaps it will all be clear, but I'm not panicked if it doesn't resolve itself fully by the opening. Let's pick it apart a bit to indulge in the exhibition's premise a bit and perhaps make some good decisions to benefit the work.

Speak to you tomorrow!

install in progress

Gordon > Blue:

I think it’s looking really good so far. I can see what you mean about the awkwardness and wondered if it might be to do with the shell being close to the wall in relation to how much video tape is trailing. At the moment there is a nice sense of implied motion of the turtle being dragged and leaving all the entrails of the video tape. The implied amount of remaining space for it to be moved/dragged might be something to think about. Would having the ceiling hook a bit more centralised help?
Can the lighting be removed? Perhaps use only what you need to dramatically light and just take out anything else that isn’t required.

Can’t really gauge a sense of the gallery space from the pictures so I suppose I will have to wait to see it tomorrow but it looks from the snaps to be a strong work.

Talk to you then!

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