29 September 2007 –
6 January 2008
In Triple Echo, the De La Warr Pavilion brought together a season of new audio-visual work by artists Sonia Boyce, Sophy Rickett and Terry Smith. Each artist’s project had a distinctive process and approach, developed initially as live performance pieces, working in collaboration with composers and performers to finally culminate as three seperate gallery installations. Alongside the exhibitions and in the auditorium, the Pavilion presented an exciting film and music season including an exclusive concert to celebrate the Pavilion’s anniversary by Michael Nyman, internationally renowned composer of film scores that have become modern classics.
A new film by Sophy Rickett
with music by Ed Hughes
Auditorium is a direct response to Glyndebourne Opera House, both as a physical site and as a centre of music and performance with a rich and celebrated history. The opera house is a striking landmark set against the rolling Sussex Downs and also the vehicle for Glyndebourne’s epic productions that invlove the massive co-ordination of an international company of singers, musicians, designers, technicians and producers.
Sophy Rickett and Ed Hughes’s film goes to the heart of this vast production house, bringing together their artistic values and interest in modernist forms, and strongly echoing Sophy Rickett’s photographic work. The film uncompromisingly strips back the operatric space to its architectural and theatrical core, using simple, slow movement that transforms the interior of the building in a monumental caress of light and shadow.
Ed Hughes’s musical score overlays the film’s formal, grid-like structures with its own elements of line and rhythm while adding further dimensions fo musical space and colour. Auditorium is a two-screen presentation, giving the work a distinctive sculptural quality. The images are visible on both sides of each screen so the film is experienced in the round, enveloped by Hughes’s accompanying sound-scape.
Sophy Rickett’s work came to prominence in the late 1990s, following her graduation from the Royal College of Art, London. Since 1996, Sophy Rickett’s photographic work has explored the tension between the narrative tendencies and the abstract possibilities of photography. Ignoring many of the descriptive and representational capabilities of the camera, she has worked almost exclusively at night, building her work around the drama between what the photograph might reveal and what it might conceal. Her photographs generate a powerful atmosphere and sense of place, one that is consistently infused with the desire, uncertainty and expectation associated with darkness and the unseen.
For you, only you
A project by Sonia Boyce
Visual artist Sonia Boyce has conceived a collborative project that addresses the boundary between classical music and sound art. With For you, only you, Boyce brings the world of the early Renaissance into the 21st century by marrying the inventions of the great Franco-Flemish composer Josquin Desprez (c.1440-1521) with the contemporary voice of the Greek composer Mikhail Karikis.
Josquin is one of the most influential composers in the history of Western music, representing the pinnacle of compositional development in the early Renaissance period. Karikis’s encounter woth Josquin’s sacredchoral piece Tu solus qui facis mirabilia (You alone can do wonders) involves a deconstruction of the original score as the basis for a totally new piece of music, which imagines a dialogue between two characters: the voice of an old master and a contemporary, troubled voice.
For you, only you takes the form of a three-screen, audio-visual installation which documents the first performance of this new piece which took place in April 2007 in the Chapel of Magdalen College, Oxford. It was performed by Karikis and the early music choral group Almire, under the leadership of David Skinner, Director of Music at Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge. The project is accompanied by a fully illustrated publication featuring a description of the narrative behind Karikis’s reworking of Josquin, commentaries on the collaboration by the main protagonists and an analysis of the creative process by the writer Jean Fisher, together with a CD featuring For you, only you and four closely related compositions from the inaugural Oxford concert.
Sonia Boyce is a British Afro-Caribbean artist, living and working in London. Her early pastel drawings and photographic collages address issues of race, ethnicity and contemporary urban experience, questioning racial stereotypes in the media and in day-to-day life. More recently her work has shifted to incorporate a variety of media that combine photographs, collages, films, prints, drawings, installation and sound. Boyce has worked with other artists in improvisational collaborations, bringing the audience into sharper focus as an integral part of the artwork and demonstrating how cultural differences might be articulated, mediated and enjoyed.
Terry Smith with Ian Dearden and Linda Hirst
Broken Voices by visual artist Terry Smith is a new sound intervention that takes a classical musical score, Duo Seraphim clamabant a 3 voci, by Claudio Monteverdi (1567-1643) as its starting point.
Smith has collaborated with the renowned vocalist Linda Hirst and the acclaimed contemporary composer and sound designer Ian Dearden to develop and produce the sound element for Broken Voices.
A series of one-off live performances were specifically developed through discussions, rehearsals and improvisation. They were presented by Artprojx at three locations – St George’s La Chiesa Anglicana di Venezia 52nd Venice Biennale with Nuova Icona, A Foundation, Greenland Street, Liverpool and at the Tete a Tete Opera Festival London.
Smith has used each performance with Hirst and Dearden to explore the ephemeral notion of sound. This has allowed the work to remain experimental throughout, bringing together ideas, sounds and images to combine and create an audio-visual montage. Improvisation and change continues to be a key element; like all of Smith’s work Broken Voices remains in a constant state of flux. The influence of composer John Cage is evident throughout, where Smith plays with the idea of chance and indeterminacy by fusing noise, sound and music.
The audio-visual installation provides the viewer with an opportunity to observe different aspects of the project examining not only the original music, but also the idea that language and meaning is often broken and fractured.
Terry Smith is an installation artist and film maker whose site specific architectural interventions have been shown internationally. Smith has made major installations at the BritishMuseum and Tate Modern and in 1999 and 2003 exhibited video commissions at the Venice Biennale. Earlier this year he showed video works to accompany the Chris Burden show at the South London Gallery; Videos at MOCA South London; Drawings at Temple Bar Gallery, Dublin; Sculpture at Makeshift, London; and Video at the Royal Scottish Academy.
The De La Warr Pavilion in partnership with CINECITY presented Single Shot, a series of film and video works by artists and new talent, all shot in one take. To compliment the Triple Echo season the films were shown in clusters on monitors around the building, creating a pick-and-mix of moving image works that visitors can enjoy as and where they find them.