2008, Centre for Contemporary Art, Glasgow international 08, Glasgow

The installation was developed through the Creative Lab Residency (2006) and tested through open studios. Visitors were invited to engage with her through a one-to-one installation in which the audience actively participated in the construction of the work’s meaning, generating a collection of video portraits. This is a two way corridor structure for a one-to-one mediatised performative installation designed as a site specific by making sense of the history of the place and people it is presented to. The work’s meaning is constructed together with the audience’s participation in it. With the use of archival footage and video delays, it tries to capture people’s moment of self-awareness in the present, here constructed as layers of representation of time.

‘When we think of the present as what ought to be, it is no longer, and when we think of it as existing, it is already past…all perception is already memory’ (Henry Bergson, Matièr et mémoire, 166-167)

The work was based on research on the redevelopment of areas where once the Tenements Houses stood, the Gorbals area of Glasgow. They were taken down in the 80’s causing a tear in the city and collective memory. The research was carried out at the Scottish Screen Archive and Peoples Palace, were the installation was initially thought to be placed.

The final installation was presented at the Centre for Contemporary Art, part of the biannual Glasgow international 08, directed by Francis McKee

Structure and piece for CCA. The two way corridor structure shown in the pictures is for a one-to-one mediatised performative installation and is designed as a site specific by making sense of the history of the place and people it is presented to. The work’s meaning is constructed together with the audience’s participation in it.  The interaction over a period of 3 days and the information recorded and played back. These will be between 12-1, 2-3, 4-5, 6-7, allowing for 4 people per hour (booking organised accordingly). The environment is an mdf/wood structure. Two small corridors of 1 x 2 mts each (2 mts high), the partition in the middle would have to raised from the floor of a couple of centimeters to allow for cabling to go through. The two corridors are: one for myself and one for a member of the public. We were sited in front of a screen connected to a camera recording and playing back our own delayed mirror image. At times this was  interfered by selected footage about collapsing/rising buildings in Glasgow (National Library of Scotland and Scottish Screen Archive kindly provided video footage). During the dialogue with a member of public I asked questions such as: what is memory? what are you looking at now? and they overlapped aspects of the past with their experience of the present.

Technical. The following equipment were used: 2 video cameras (high definition minidv), 2 monitors, 2 video delay systems, 1 dvr, 1 video switch, 1 video splitter. Microphones to record to cameras.

(installation view, stills from Scottish Screen Archive footage and video of participants)

“The recent experimentation of gaps, scotoma (in the visual field), apnea (of breathing), amnesia (gap in memory), time-gap (transmission), is introduced to allow the audience to participate in the event because, just like a spot on a blank page, we/audience fill it in with our brain/life experience/imagination. Process which, if contextualised in relation to the Baudrillian concept of punctum and the perceptual Kaniza effect (a perceptual gap is where the eye goes to compensate for a loss): it enables me to define a strategy for the creative process in which the designed perceptual lacuna asks to be filled in by audiences.  These are adopted, implied and experienced in my work in relation to the condition within which they happen: in liveness as site for continuous present, where performance art and live installation interchange take place. I specifically use various digital technologies postulating that continuous present can be constructed by perceiving reality as collapsed layers of its representations and time (i.e.: memory, live documentation). In the Mnemonic Present series, Apnea and Re-Moved for example making the audience aware of the passing of time as they are experiencing it (time gap in video), by being faced with an element of past experience in the present, allowed them to participate in its construction; this also mirrors the everyday life condition of relating to the world by referring to our memory archive in the perception of reality, and ourselves, in any given moment.”

(from Cologni E, That spot in the ‘moving picture’ is you, (perception in time-based art), in Blood, Sweat & Theory: Research through Practice in Performance  ed. John Freeman, Libri Publishing, London, 2010, pp. 83-107)


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