Monday, 29 March 2010

Whitechapel Salon

I was invited by Ruth Beale to contribute to her ongoing salon project. The topic of discussion what that curates egg: 'agency'... I was joined by Alec, Ian and Chris from The Hut Project and Sophie Hope. The salon took place in the salubrious environs of Goshka Macuga's installation The Nature of the Beast.

More info here

Thursday, 25 March 2010

I who have nothing...

Following the commercial failure of their recent exhibition "What's in it for me?", New Display Strategies presented a one off party "I who have nothing". Hosted by SEVENTEEN, guests were invited to embrace the last opportunity to see the show and drown their sorrows to a
selection of music which reflected upon or extended the mythology of being poor.

Those on Spotify can download the playlist here

Wednesday, 24 March 2010


FORCEFIELD: Videos //////////

7th April / 29th May

PV: Thursday 8th April / 6.30-8.30


This exhibition brings together a selection of short video works produced by Forcefield between 1996 and 2002. Now on an indefinite hiatus (currently holidaying in the Bermuda Triangle), this is the first solo gallery exhibition of Forcefield’s work to be held in London.

Forcefield were an artistic collective working out of Providence, Rhode Island. Operating under the pseudonyms “PLobe”, “Meerk Puffy”, “Gorgon Radeo” and “Le Geef”, the four members mashed low-fi fuzzy energies with tribalist signals across a broad aesthetic programme of music, costume, communal actions, performance, installation, textiles, printmaking and video.

In the late 90s and early 00s, alongside noise duo Lightning Bolt, Forcefield galvanized a burgeoning cross-disciplinary alternative scene in Providence. Fort Thunder, a now destroyed warehouse on the second floor of a pre-Civil War former textile factory in the Olneyville district of the town, was its epicentre. Home to three out of four Forcefield members as well as Lightning Bolt (LB’s Brian Chippendale was a starter member of the community), Fort Thunder also regularly hosted gigs, craft fairs, cookie bake-offs, Halloween mazes, indoor firework displays – even costumed wrestling events over its 9,000 square feet of space.

Forcefield were firmly situated within the disparate and hermetic sphere of creation and display that was Fort Thunder. Accordingly, when viewed now, their work demonstrates a vibrant disregard for disciplinary as well as institutional boundaries.

In a November 2002 text for Artforum, Steve Lafreniere wrote that Forcefields videos…

… are their most narrative works. They star the members of the group, concealed in kookily glamorous all over body stockings. These are knit on industrial looms by Gorgon and look like the unisex clothing of a multisex species. On video their ice-cream-colored zigzag patterns take on a pixelated buzz, which obscures any nuance of the wearer's body language until just silhouette and broad gesture remain. Thus the characters have an alien-/Other-ness to them, even if their onscreen lives appear terribly humdrum. We see them playing clunky video games, chasing after small runaway creatures, or holding forth in gibberish from behind colossal laminated desks. If these are broadcasts from another green world, it's obvious that the aliens' televisions serve the same purpose as our own. But wait, here's their Discovery Channel: Forcefield figures dancing in slow motion around a tall, willowy knit pyramid, clapping their hands in a ritual of ... pacification? Worship? But soon this exotica looks familiar, too, and the thought begins to creep in that these aren't extraterrestrials at all but ourselves at an inane remove.

Forcefield's art work has been exhibited at the Institute for Contemporary Art, London; the Daniel Reich Gallery, New York; Space 1026, Philadelphia; Art Basel Miami; Museo de Arte Reina Sofia, Madrid; Tate Britain; and the 2002 Biennial Exhibition at the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, among other venues.

Forcefield: Videos is the ninth exhibition in an ongoing programme curated for Seventeen’s basement space by Paul Pieroni. The exhibition will run concurrently with Abigail Reynolds’ solo exhibition in the main space.

Wednesday, 17 March 2010


Preview: Thursday 18th March 6pm-9pm
Exhibitions run from the 19th March to 17th April
Line Up:

GALLERY: Nick Laessing
ANNEXE: Neu! Adam Thomas
LIBRARY: Guestroom
FOYER: Ben Woodeson

Featuring a new solo show by Berlin based Nick Laessing, a NEU! platform exhibition by Adam Thomas, a special project for our independent publications library by Guestroom and finally a Foyer space intervention by Ben Woodeson.


GALLERY /// Nick Laessing: LIGHT | READING

Nick Laessing’s work revisits the utopian aspirations of scientific rebels, autodidacts and amateur experimenters.

For LIGHT | READING, Laessing will explore the ‘free-energy’ movement, producing a new body of work based around experiments with the machine Prototype II (after US patent 6545444 B2 by John Bedini).
The free energy movement follows claims and inventions made primarily by the scientist Nikola Tesla at the beginning of 20th century. He thought it possible to harvest free or radiant energy from the atmosphere or aether. Since then a number of inventors have worked on his theories and more recently the isolated work of a few individuals has found a wide following through the internet.

Laessing’s reconstruction of a radiant energiser first built by USA inventor John Bedini will attempt to be the source of power for lighting and sound equipment used to present found radio interviews and research conducted by the artist during his recent PERMACULTURES residency at SPACE. The main gallery will thus become a framework for entering the tacit world of these experimenters.

Nick Laessing was born in London. Following BA studies at Kingston University he gained a PGD from the Royal Academy of Art in 1999. Recent solo exhibitions include “Nick Laessing” Arcade, London (2009), “Nick Laessing”, Arquebuse, Geneva (2007), “Nick Laessing”, Mary Mary, Glasgow (2005).


ANNEXE /// Adam Thomas: colourless green ideas sleep furiously

Characteristically condensing around the visual dimension of language, Adam Thomas’ practice suggests new and intuitive models for rendering the art/language binary.

The idea of ‘making’ language – translating it into physical forms coterminous with the plastic arts – is a central theme throughout colourless green ideas sleep furiously. Handled by Thomas, language becomes an object: a thing in the world that demands not only linguistic, but also phenomenological, aesthetical, historical, art canonical, mythical and personal consideration.

Adam Thomas was born in Swansea in 1984. He gained his BA Fine Art from Kingston University, London, in 2006. Recent exhibitions include Young Adam Thomas, Associates, London (2007), All Cut Up (group), Roebling Hall, New York (2008), Paper Show (group), David Risley Gallery, Copenhagen (2009) and The Little Shop on Hoxton Street (group), Limoncello, London, (2009).

colourless green ideas sleep furiously is the third NEU! exhibition at SPACE. Previous exhibitions were; PROH-SOH’ PA-PEER by Richard John Jones (September 2009) and What I Believe (a Polemical Collection) by Ruth Beale (November 2009). NEU! is an ongoing cycle of solo exhibitions by emerging artists at SPACE.


LIBRARY /// The Librarians: A Guestroom Project

Installed by Guestroom in SPACE’s own independent publication library, The Librarians is a series of eight video portraits concerned with personal libraries and collections.

Each film looks at one person’s selection processes and by extension the design of their environment in relation to their wider practice and ideas. Within the series we encounter both intentional collections and more organic yet highly specific selections within an ordinary bookshelf. As a sequence, the portraits become part of a complex constellation as relationships and connections develop between individuals and their ideas.

The Librarians are Tom McCarthy, Michael Leslie, Lorenza Boisi, Shaun Pubis, Pablo Bronstein, Rebecca Bligh, Isabel Waidner and Adam Sutherland.

Guestroom is a collaborative project by artists Maria Benjamin (born Broxburn, 1972, lives in London) and Ruth Höflich (born Munich, 1976, lives in London).

For more information visit:


FOYER: Ben Woodeson

Ben Woodeson creates works that aim to tease and unsettle the viewer and the exhibiting institution.
Since the start of 2009 Woodeson has been making and exhibiting the Health & Safety Violation Series of deliberately dangerous sculptures. To date, these have included 33,000 ball bearings on the floor, automatic trip wires, suffocation devices, electric fences, spinning metal weights, twisting ropes and steel garrotting cables.

His work for the Foyer Space will comprise of a new site-specific intervention and a video documenting a cycle of recently developed works.

Ben Woodeson studied at Chelsea College of Art and Design and Glasgow School of Art. He has exhibited throughout the UK, Europe and the USA. He has a studio in SPACE’s Triangle building in East London.

The Foyer Space platform showcases the work of a SPACE studio artist in conjunction with the main exhibition cycles.