“The Accurate Perception Available When Our Eye Becomes Single” @ Thames-Side Studios 🎨⚡👀
For this week's last #ArtThursday feature of 2022, we popped into the Thames-Side Studio Gallery on our lunch break to catch "The Accurate Perception Available When Our Eye Becomes Single" audio-visual exhibition.
The exhibition presented an immersive multi-screen installation evoking the emotional specifics of place (Orford Ness on the Suffolk coast) while exploring the elasticity of time and history.
It is a collaboration between Richard Ducker (video) and Ian Thompson (sound) with no linear narrative; sound and image are not synchronised, so each viewing is a unique experience.
Welcomed by one of the exhibiting artists, Richard Dawkins, we entered the Thames-Side Gallery in awe. The space was transformed into an sensory experience that drew you in to each screen by the darkness.
The title of the installation, The Accurate Perception Available When Our Eye Becomes Single, is taken from the writings of the religious cult Heaven’s Gate, connecting the area’s UFO sightings to the paranoia of conspiracy theories.
For the installation, the visuals are broken into seven looped sections and projected on multiple screens and monitors, with four stereo audio channels on loudspeakers.
It is this conflation of the military, science, and myth which establishes the strange dislocation and eeriness of the place and constitutes the meaning of the work, while the buildings, landscape, and soundscape are its subject. It is about the site and its sense of detachment in time and, with nationalism on the rise, its past echoing into our future.
The positioning of the monitors within the gallery, provided an engaging walkthrough of the space. The volume of the soundscapes coming from the speakers invited you to pause to take in the full experience in front of the screens.
Orford Ness is an eight-kilometre shingle spit, used for secret military testing during the first world war until the cold war in the 1980s. The site is now desolate but the decaying architecture from seventy years of military occupation remain. These strange elemental structures are formed out of an alien landscape that resembles a lost movie set.
To capture Orford Ness’s eerie sense of dislocation, most of the imagery is filmed very slowly in black and white as if watching a still image in motion; one of the histories of the site was the development of fast film techniques for capturing bombing runs. Intercut with this are sections in colour, shot with a handheld smartphone camera and telephoto lens as a deliberate counterpoint, inviting the viewer to slowly absorb the extraordinary landscape and ruined buildings that appear like post-apocalyptic ancient burial sites.
This piece that was projected on perpendicular walls was the most intriguing, which came down to the incorporation of red and the size of the projection. It was one of the smallest artworks on show which draws the viewer to come closer.
Richard Ducker, who filmed the videos for the project, stands in front of one of the live artworks.
Richard kindly provided us with this quote when asked about how he found putting on this exhibition:
"The challenge of taking on such a big space (Thames-Side Studios Gallery) was a really thrilling exercise in curatorial endeavours"
A big thank you to Richard for talking to us and providing a deeper insight into his artistic journey as we viewed the exhibition!
Credits to: Thames Side Studios
Our final #ArtThursday blog post of the year next week, will look back on Stööki's art journey over the year with some highlights and what to look forward to for 2023!