PureScreen #20: Let The User Speak Next (Mapping Place and Space)

30 April 2008 / 18:30 - 20:00

PureScreen #20 draws together a selection of new international work, from the open submission call, to examine the various ways that artists engage with concepts and techniques of filmmaking as a way of mapping place and space.

This curated programme explores ideas around architecture and landscape, and both physical structure and imagined or unseen spatial territories. It addresses the intersection between ideas and peripheries of space, place and mobility in contemporary artists’ experimental film and video practice.

In investigating complexities of cinematic cartographies, geographies of space, liminal landscapes and non-places, the selected artists use the camera as a way to express our relationship to environments and address our sense of place. The films focus on landscape as mise-en-scène; manmade, urban and natural environments; the industrial and the pastoral; the reality or the experience of architectural space, light and shadow, stillness and movement.

Ultimately the works call into question how film can create a fluid sense of place rather than a fixed notion, and how a time-based art can be used as a way to express space.


Tal Amiran / London, UK
Untitled (Fairground) / 2006 / 3’ 13”

Two fairground attractions filmed at night. People are sitting on a “Freak Out’ ride as it starts spinning and moving repetitively with its lights glowing in the dark. There is a feeling of total suspension whilst the lack of sound dictates a sense detachment and alienation.

Alan Bogana & Dave Green / Sheffield, UK
Here and Here / 2006 / 5’ 46”

In Here and Here the artists take to the streets in an attempt to discover the difference between “here and here”. Despite the fact that over sixty members of the public were interviewed, the results remain inconclusive.

Andrea Fitzpatrick / Sheffield, UK
Inverleith / 2007 / 9’ 20”

The audience view a series of still images of unpopulated spaces that bear the marks of years of use. Signage and equipment indicate the function of this large townhouse. The work is largely silent with curious snippets of conversations providing further clues about the demise of the building. When the artist studied at Edinburgh College of Art, Inverleith was a hub of activity and the kitchen served as its core. Since the kitchen’s closure over two years ago, Inverleith deteriorated and finally closed its doors in July 2007.

Esther Johnson / Sheffield, UK
Tune In / 2006 / 14’ 16”

Tune In follows the fascinating world of amateur radio operators, better known as HAMS. Dealing with the politics of space and social communication, this portrait blends documentary and abstract audio to reflect the world of HAM radio and the use of DIY equipment in an ever-changing modern world.

Nick Jordan / Manchester, UK
Let the User Speak Next / 2006 / 10’ 00”

A visitor’s encounter with ‘La Tourette’, a Dominican monastery designed by Le Corbusier (the ‘crow-like one’), who designed the Modernist building according to his ‘modular’ system. Through sound and silence, structural form, primary colours, nature and bird song, the film illustrates a curious journey punctuated by moments of suspense and reverie.

Claire McArdle / London, UK
I’ve Gone Away / 2007 / 2’ 37”

I’ve Gone Away is a film about a sense of place and our ideas of home. It explores romantic notions of loss and longing in absent spaces, and how we seem to be drawn to open, melancholic and contemplative spaces in nature.

Kristin Mojsiewicz / Glasgow, UK
Gole / 2006 / 3’ 33”

A disorientating experience of space. In a claustrophobic gorge, the figure of the artist revolves as one with the camera – it attempts to read her face and the impassive surface of the gorge. An inner dialogue is heard in Italian, giving directions to an elusive end point, without translation.

Matteo Rosa / Malmö, Sweden
Libero/ 2005 / 1’

Libero is a short, silent video, one minute long. The camera is still, showing a river flowing in a mountain valley. Suddenly a balloon appears in the scene and flies up to the sky, till it briefly disappears.

Alistair Ruff / Bristol, UK
Sunrise to Sunset / 2007 / 4’ 42”

Sunrise to sunset, London, Seoul and Hong Kong. One image taken for every minute of the day from sunrise to sunset as the artist walks around a city, with no planned route.

Veronika Spierenburg / London, UK
Marks on the Wall / 2007 / 15’ 36”

The art school in Beijing contains 3000 students and is one of the largest institutions in China. It is highly competitive to enter the school; accordingly the students are very good in drawing. The artist spent a month at the school observing the movement of the students in the drawing classes. The final result is a film about an existing choreography with the focus of stillness and movement.

PureScreen is Castlefield Gallery’s screening event for artist’s film and video. Curated from open submissions, the programme provides a platform for outstanding recent work and aims to support new and emerging practitioners.

For further info or to join the mailing list please email purescreen@castlefieldgallery.co.uk

Or visit: www.castlefieldgallery.co.uk/purescreen.asp, for programme details and to download PureScreen: Film & Video Artists Information Pack. PureScreen is supported by Arts Council England.