Writings and Proposals
Windows | Outside In
Proposals for the Kendal Windows On Art Exhibition, 2004
I wish to propose several alternative ideas as my possible
contribution to the "Kendal Windows On Art" exhibition,
2004. Realising any of these ideas will be dependent on several
factors, which will be determined by the availability of specific
spaces/venues/shops and the concerns, requirements, sympathies
and sensibilities of the shop owner(s) or manager(s). I suspect
that in all cases I would benefit from some help in the form
of a diplomatic go-between! These ideas are listed in order
of my preferences however as long as I'm given enough preparation
time, I'd be happy to pursue any of them.
a) A Charity Shop or all Charity Shops in Kendal (five or
six I think?)
From the extant items in the shop(s), I propose to collect
multiples of one item which will, when placed in the appropriate
context, become both sculpturally strong, metaphorically loaded
and hopefully politically significant in a non-propagandist
way. For instance, given the concerns of Oxfam, blankets may
be piled in high columns to the height of the window, filling
the window or bundled into tight bales to be hung in the window.
One symbolic object of fragility and innocence, such as an
egg or many eggs would complement these. Other options might
be to collect objects from the shop(s) and arrange them to
either fill a window, leaving only a small viewing opening
(or many openings) to the shop within or in a sculptural form.
Alternatively, on a series of shelves filling a window, line
up a systematic display of old suitcases, which are stuffed
full, each with multiples of one item. (Items to be determined).
Or, using two suitcases per window, fill one to bursting point
with multiples of one metaphorically significant item and
in the other place one object that suggests either a questioning
of our approach to giving and care or that portrays an optimistic
message of hope achieved through the act of giving.
Multiples of common goods would also allow the shop(s) to
continue trading without fear of limiting their stocks. It
might also be a good idea to persuade the shop(s) to advertise
to its customers for specific items, such as blankets or forks
or spectacles, that I might require, through small, discreet
in-store posters or flyers. How I proceed will ultimately
be dictated by the nature of the available objects or items.
b) Hadwin's or similar audio and TV/Video Shop or department
store which stocks and sells audio and TV/Video equipment,
(or any shop depending on accessing the necessary equipment).
Using several TV monitors and VCR players displayed in a specific
configuration (to be determined) in a window or windows, create
a series of new video works which will show images of natural
processes in flux, i.e. rivers and currents turning and twisting;
smoke, representing air, folding and unfolding as it plumes,
etc. All films to be shot in extreme close up and shown in
extreme slow motion. Colours within each will be treated using
film-editing technology to create highly saturated colours.
Alternatively, present films of faces, head on, turning and
in profile, opening and closing eyes in extreme slow motion.
As with sound, the act of slowing down images so that they
move at an almost imperceptible rate has the effect of magnifying
minute details and changes that are normally missed when played
at today's hyper-speed. Showing images of natural processes
or ordinary yet unique faces at such slow speeds encourages
us to look at the world more closely and to pay attention
to the beautiful subtleties and nuances of the everyday.
c) Beales of Kendal or similar department store.
Create a new five to eight minutes soundwork to be played
through the store's PA system five minutes before the store
is due to close at the end of each business day, thereby giving
customers warning of imminent closure. Ideally the piece will
be non-intrusive, calming and beautiful. Hopefully it will
be psychologically seductive, the aim being encourage the
shoppers to return, often.