Miriam Austin & Adam James
THE BIRTH CAUL
Thursday 15 August – Sunday 1 September 2013. Daily 24-hour. VITRINE Bermondsey Square.
Preview: Wednesday 14 August 2013, 6.30 – 9.30pm.
Performances & Film Premiere: Saturday 31 August 2013. 2pm – 4pm
Co-curated by Jordan McKenzie and Alys Williams.
Miriam Austin and Adam James, two London-based artists, have been brought together for the first time to exhibit a culmination of performance, film and sculptural work developed in response to shared themes of role-play and narratives, real and fictional.
For the duration of the exhibition, the gallery will operate as a repository or archive, exploring the relationship between the sculptural object and the body. Central to this installation is a concern with the ways in which specific objects inform movement; taking ordinary, everyday encounters and materials as a starting point, both artists push them toward something mythic or sacred. The works shown continually interrogate the space between these points of reference.
For the opening, Austin presents the first part of her live work. Using rubber and blossom petal based sculptures performers share a ritual experience, encompassing the public square and the gallery space.
An event on Saturday 24 August will feature: the second part of Austin’s live work happening as a durational performance throughout the event; a large scale performance work by Adam James performed on the public square; and the Premiere of James’ film ‘The Mudhead Dance’ in shortwave cinema.
Austin's practice can be thought of as a kind of shadow play. Whether installation, sculpture, video or performance, the work speaks at once of cyclical organic processes and of a form of corporeal vulnerability. It’s material, formal and symbolic properties are devices - narrative, performative, psycho-suggestive - used to give rise to a suspension of disbelief; even to something akin to hypnotic trance. The works open imagined and hybrid territories whose referents oscillate between landscape, animal and body.
James' work grows out of real life encounters. He appropriates these and migrates them through a process of deconstruction, before re-staging them as live art and film. His modality shifts between director, performer, choreographer and maker. At the core of his practice is an on-going exploration into the use of improvisation and game mechanics as means to generate choreographic content with the goal being to better understand personal, social and cultural constructs.
VITRINE Bermondsey Square