MAstars 2007: Warren McLachlan, MA Fine Art

MAstars 2007: Warren McLachlan, MA Fine Art Warren McLachlan, Curtain, 2007, iPod, amp, speaker wire, cigarette foil, speakers, 250cm x 250cm, 2 mins

Anna Dumitriu selects Warren McLachlan from Chelsea College of Art and Design for MAstars

The booming sound of Warren Mclachlan's installation is instantly attractive; beckoning you to enter his installation, where you find an amplifier is connected, by two crocodile clip tipped wires, to a vast foil sheet. At the bottom of the sheet are two more crocodile clips with two more wires feeding off into a pair of speakers. The powerful sound causes the foil to ripple and undulate, reflecting the warm, bright light that is shining onto it from the corner of the room, around the walls and straight into your eyes.

Ex-smoker Mclachlan has collected hundreds of those little bits of foil from inside cigarette packets from kindly smoking friends and pieced them together to form a large silver sheet. 'The Foil symbolises addiction' he told me, previously collecting it himself from the cigarettes he smoked, 'I was sitting on all this material so I tried some experiments, I found a way of quilting the paper together'.

The foil now acts as a kind of conductor for the sound as it travels from the amp to the speakers. For Mclachlan the piece is primarily about energy transfer, but its also about the way such an everyday substance can be transformed through ingenuity, about the experimental processes that take place in creating an artwork and about how visual, conceptual and sound art can be effectively brought together in a deceptively simple way.

Selected by Anna Dumitriu
Published October, 2007

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