Artists Iain Forsyth and Jane Pollard

Londonion 2013 – Commissioned by Film & Video Umbrella for MerzBank

Iain and Jane, collective visual artists were asked to create a piece to celebrate the forefather of collage ‘Kurt Schwitters’. They were asked to look at a key text or poem by Schwitters and bring it into the present day – an interpretation that is more contemporary. Iain and Jane picked the piece Londonion (1946) as is a playful and humours poem that draws your attention to the everyday small things. They wanted it more accessible, so rather than just video they made it into an app that can be listened to while you traverse the streets of London.

 

Rock ‘N’ Roll Suicide – 1998 Institute of Contemporary Arts London

For this piece Jane and Iain recreated David Bowie’s Ziggy Stardusts farewell show from 1073. Finding the best Ziggy Stardust wannabe and world class musicians to be ‘The Spiders from Mars’, they didn’t just replay the songs – they actually choreographed the whole performance right down to costumes, body movements, facial expressions – ‘down to minuscule details’. This must have been a monumental task! The show was played in the ICA over 2 nights. It was also streamed online.

“Reflecting the contemporary fixation with virtual and simulated realities, the event was a timely critique of how stardom, authenticity and nostalgia can operate in contemporary culture. Combining an absolute fragility with a magical unpredictability A Rock ‘N’ Roll Suicide provided a space and invitation for genuine audience interaction.”

I am interested in this idea of fixation with the virtual and simulated realities especially in relation to modern online platforms – e.g. Snapchat, Facebook, Instagram where images are stylised so that they do not resemble the real anymore. The audience integration is an important aspect to this piece as the atmosphere would not be complete without them. Audience interaction is important to my work also. I would have loved to been a part of this one.

 

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The Independent Review

Re-Learning Piece 2008 – MUDAM Luxembourg 

This piece was performed 10 years after the recreation of Ziggy Stardusts Farewell performance.

It is a performance work in which Forsyth & Pollard re-work Vito Acconci’s ‘Learning Piece’ from 1971.

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