activated space
 origins  david cunningham
The Connecting Principle

23 April 2002:
A meeting with Monica Ross, Susan Hiller, Joel Fisher and others in Newcastle University at which we formulated the idea of the research people in the Fine Art Department making an exhibition within the University.  Two ideas presented themselves - something formal in the Hatton gallery and something less formal within the curious building or warren that is the Fine Art Department.

10 June 2002:

A meeting to discuss the October project in depth.  Michele Hirschhorn, Matthew Sansom, Jonathan Clark, Monica Ross, David Cunningham, Roxy Walsh, Volker Eichelmann, Joel Fisher, Wolfgang Weileder, Brigitte Jurack, Uta Kogelsberger, Andrew Burton, Andy Thomson.   Not present but interested: Tony Halliday, Jorn Ebner

Some notes on points  discussed:

The accent of the timebase switched to the viewer a rare opportunity to escape the usual constraints of exhibition and funding.

To be able to contribute to a wider debate on practice in this region

Monica: mature practices, priority of requirements of the work Brigitte: ad hoc anarchistic - rough around the edges DC: informal Michelle's role- contextualisation of project rationale- regionally, nationally, overview, articulation, co-ordination, invitation - inclusion of regional artists/ related work Joel: Who is the audience? students Faculty university context of other regional artists-arts community of interest and national network of live experimental arts projects and related initiatives re: current issues of practice Andy T: disappearing as appearing

dates agreed Thu 17, Fri 18 Oct times not quite - midnight to midnight 24 hrs 48 hrs (Regional  Platform for young and  emerging artists is on Saturday 19th at Waygood)

prelim list of poss contributions:
Roxy and Uta had to leave before the meeting reached this point......
Matthew:- idea1 process based composition, acoustic, harnessing the voices of a large number of students-singers located,and moving, through the building. idea 2- swamping the building with amplified low frequency ambient sound e.g. front door opening and closing.
Tony - making noises but not speaking
Wolfgang- idea 1 -devices that make noises. idea 2- performances that you can't make on your own ( poss involving actors ) and poss repeated at different times.
Andy Thomson  - The Critic, in collaboration with  Joel fisher
Volker- don't know yet
Monica- something that takes time, maybe all night, plus getting lounge- chill out - discussion area together.
Andrew Burton- don't know yet
Jonathan- generative ambient music for the  lounge- chill out - discussion area
Joel- 8 and half minutes, maybe 9 minutes, slow light, in collaboration with Andy Thomson
Brigitte - don't know yet, will talk to bits of Foriegn Investment, thinking about the building...
Jorn-( by email) idea1- might show just a series of images of front gardens and plants, in an attempt to decorate the interior of the university with the dubious beauty of gardens. In this sense, urban environments would be performed as decorative elements to an interior public environment.

idea2 or  I have been thinking about installing the caroussel-slide-projection component of a recent work of mine, called ‘;Portable Garden (Treatise)‘;. This 81-slide long narrative comes in 3 sections set in Hamburg and London, showing front gardens and garden centres; these frame a sequence in which a figure is handling a series of objects, which are the Portable Garden. The work is sectioned into two chapters which are headlined by slides saying "The artificial state" and "The natural state". A third heading slide bears the title, "Portable Garden (Treatise)": the images in this context are intended to refer to notions of natural and artificial, when it comes to political understandings of a State.

The proposition for this event has evolved through a series of informal discussions among the research fellows and in reference to contingent discusssions within the N. E. Live Art Forum which Michelle Hirschhorn co-ordinated on behalf of Northern Arts earlier this year.

Background/ national and regional context - notes by Monica Ross

One outcome of The Live Art Forum is that a steering group has formed to co-ordinate a Live Art Platform , as a showcase for young and emerging artists in the region, on Saturday October 19th (for more info on this please see following email. please pass on this pre-info to any BA and MA students as appropriate). The organisation of the Platform is part of a national initiative and several similar events are happening in different regions. The aim of The Regional Platforms is to both showcase new work regionally and select work for the National Review of Live Art, which happens in Glasgow every year.

The October event we are proposing is still under discussion. It arises from activities in our practices and is speculative in its intentions.
A current draft formulation from myself and David is as follows:

The connecting principle of the work is of time based process.

The event will utilise -explore -animate those incidental spaces in the Fine Art building which are normally considered peripheral: corridors, corners, storage spaces and so on. The idea being to work in a low key kind of way, with factors such as time and scale forming a discontinuity with the conventions of formal exhibition, opening alternative possibilities for the viewer to explore or participate in an (evolving) situation.

We are thinking of this event as open and fluid, with a focus on how the works themselves may evolve unexpected correspondences and interactions to and with this possibility.

return to: Activated Space

The Listening Room, Newcastle University

The Connecting Principle, Newcastle University