In this month's Playlist we present a selection of videos that feature 'barriers'. Featuring Jojo Taylor, Suki Chan, Megan Broadmeadow and Susan Williams MRBS
Jojo Taylor, Motivational Video for those Seeking to Overcome Obstacles and Barriers, 2019
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Suki Chan, Still Point, 2011 - 2012
Still Point, is a film installation that engages with sacred spaces and places of pilgrimage.
Whilst filming in sacred sites in Jerusalem, I was struck by how some parts of the city have two names, one in Hebrew and the other in Arabic. How one population can ‘unsee’ another group. How one part of the city is closed off to another group – by borders which are sometimes physical and sometimes psychological.
Still Point transports the audience from the site of the humble wooden structures offering refuge along Pilgrims’ Way in Northumberland, to contested sacred sites in Jerusalem, and the interior spaces of abandoned Syrian villages in the Golan Heights.
The film evokes the tension that marks them as places of refuge and spiritual quest –¬ and as materially contested sites. The shifting of allegiances – changing cultural and religious identities, the resulting layering over time, the visual clues left behind – are physically embodied in the locations Chan chose to film. Barriers and divisions are a recurring motif in Still Point, suggesting the contradictory tenets of organised religion – inclusivity and its often-inevitable corollary – exclusivity.
In making Still Point, Suki Chan encountered segregation, the militarisation of sacred spaces and the conflation of utopia with dystopia.
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Megan Broadmeadow, Let The Stars Be Set Upon The Board, 2016
Let The Stars Be Set Upon The Board has been made in response to the mysterious object known as the Antikythera Mechanism. The world’s most ancient computer, a piece of displaced technology, millennia ahead of its time, was found sitting at the bottom of the sea. It’s a scientific anomaly, whose purpose appears to have been to chart the movements of our moon and neighboring planets, yet it also seems to have settings for Greek and Egyptian calendars, therefore it confuses perceptions of culture and mythology. Who made it? What was it really for? Was it lost or discarded? Have we lost our true knowledge of our planet and stars?
The artwork comprising of a wave long metal tank and wave machine acts as barrier and communicator between the two digitalized performers who represent the Greek and Egyptian calendars on the machine. Waves dominate the work, referencing the time the Antikythera Mechanism lay beneath the sea, and the communication of our planet, moon and cosmos for which the mechanism was designed to calculate millennia ago.
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Susan Williams MRBS, Fiesta, 2014
Barrier tape installation at Arreciado, Spain. I was thinking about boundaries purely as a concept, so each of these circles made new 'boundaries' in the air as the wind blew them into different shapes. The work became a kind of wind drawing. Associations include mouths or tongues flexing and stretching, animated, in conversation, talking and munching like people at a fiesta (my last memory of the place on my previous visit) or the happy sheep bleating and eating, munching all day long. The bright colours suggest a fiesta, dancing and also of the wild flowers of late spring, the colourful folk art painting on the farmhouse walls and the Guatemalan background of the owners.
Check out Susan's Axisweb profile >