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Janoš week 3

Week 3 workshop

This week we had a lecture with Miranda. It was split into 2 parts, the first part looking and listening to content related to time and in the second part we researched one of the projects shown in the lecture. The lecture was slightly different to usual as we didn’t do blind responses during the slides, we just did them after a break. This meant that I was writing and drawing from memory, not what I could see in front of me. 

I did like the content in this lecture, there was a nice variety of work and I find the theme of time very interesting. I find the passing of time scary sometimes, so running is sometimes a form of escapism for me and it gives a sense of being in control. I don’t always find the blind reactions to the lectures that stimulating, but I always find a couple of things that grab my attention and that I can study for my project.

My project 

What I have done:

I did a photoshoot with Mike before IP class on Monday. It was inspired by the idea we came up with in Tim’s workshop the week before. I ran up and down the road outside the Soddy Lab and Mike took photographs and videos of me in-motion. The aim was to capture movement and play around with exposure lengths. The effect was photographs where I am blurry as I am moving fast and in the videos the motion is more ‘sticky’ with a longer exposure. The reason for doing this is that I wanted to show how time and movement are intertwined and you can see the visual effects of that relationship.

I also carried on documenting my runs with videos, this time in a quite different way. I am still just using my phone as I like the accessibility and rawness of the footage. The videos I took were from the perspective of my body, as opposed to having a static shot of the track. I filmed a couple of one-minute clips while I was running around town, keeping the same framing throughout. The idea was sort of inspired by slow cinema, it is not exciting, but it brings you into the moment I was in – putting you in my shoes. 

What I think:

I really like some of the photographs that Mike took of me. A slight problem was that it was the middle of the day and quite sunny. Obviously, that meant that doing long exposures was a bit tricky as loads of light goes into the lens. Really, we needed something like an ND filter or just do it at dusk with softer light. I thought that the style I wanted was achieved and the ghostly images of me running across the screen give a tangible sense of speed and how things are temporary. 

I liked the videos I took while out running. The sounds of just footsteps pounding on the ground and the consistent breathing really compliment the videos. They sound metronomic and it makes you feel like you are me running along in my perspective. I am realising how important sound is to my project and maybe the footsteps mimic the ticking of a clock? I’m think maybe I need to take more clips that are very similar, with different clothes, different weather, a different time. I need to intertwine the theme time a bit more.

What next:

Next, I need to start thinking about and testing audio recording and video editing software. I should start to plan what I want and what I can experiment with more. I would like to do another session with Mike filming, next time maybe at the track in the dark/dusk. The other aspect I need to explore is using different devices to film, go pro, put my phone on a stick, have someone cycling along next to me filming etc. 

Research and context

Samson Kambalu:  

This piece of work is a 50 second video called ‘Runner’ from 2014. Kabalu was born in 1975 in Malawi and in Oxford as an associate professor of fine art. His multi media work is inspired by his practice in Nyau culture, which is know for ritual mask performances. The work is characterised by spontaneity, playfulness and a non linear approach to time.

The video shows a runner constantly moving but not getting anywhere, like they are stuck in time. I think maybe the idea is to show that someone is trapped or just a playful look at running and time. I find it interesting as I haven’t come across many artists who have explored running in any way.

Olafur Eliasson:  

‘Your waste of time’ is the project by Eliasson that I have researched. He is an Icelandic/Danish artist known for creating sculptures and large installations. He is often very elaborate and works on a big scale and plays with light, water and air temperature to affect his installations. He set up Studio Olafur Eliasson in Berlin in 1995, which currently hosts 90 architects, artists and technical staff.

The themes he works with are often based around art and science and how art can bring about change. In this particular project, Eliasson collected pieces of ice from the largest glacier in Iceland, Vatnajökull. He then transported the blocks to Berlin and displayed blocks of the ice in a cooled room so that people could walk around and touch them. The ice from the glacier was up to 2500 years old. The project verbalises and quantifies the passing of time and to a larger extent climate change. Even though it took a lot of energy to collect the ice, Eliasson thought it was worth it to try and make people more aware of climate change.

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