Treblinka: Archaeological Investigations & Artistic Responses

centre-of-archaeology-logo_tcm44-72700Treblinka: Archaeological Investigations & Artistic Responses (2016), eds. Caroline Sturdy Colls & Michael Branthwaite, Stoke: Centre of Archaeology Special Issue, ISBN 9781534632295

Between 800,000 and 1 million people lost their lives at Treblinka extermination camp during the Holocaust. A further 10,00 perished in the nearby labour camp as a result of the Nazi death through work policy and ad hoc executions. Since 2007 both camps have been the subject of forensic archaeological research by Dr Caroline Sturdy Colls, to reveal new insights into the nature and extent of Nazi persecution.

This book presents the major findings, which included the discovery of the gas chambers, personal effects of victims, and mass graves. It also includes artistic response to these findings, curated by Michael Branthwaite and commissioned as part of the international exhibition Finding Treblinka. Featuring new artworks by Michael Branthwaite, Dave Griffiths, Janine Goldsworthy, Hilary Jack and Jenny Steele, this opened at the Museum of Struggle and Martyrdom in Treblinka, Poland in August 2015 and the Wiener Library in London, UK in June 2016.

Finding Treblinka: London

Wiener Library for the Study of the Holocaust & Genocide, 6 July – 15 September 2016

The Wiener Library’s new exhibition will explore the Nazi labour and extermination camps of Treblinka using the ground-breaking research of Staffordshire University archaeologist Dr Caroline Sturdy Colls and artistic responses to the topic curated by Michael Branthwaite.

For the first time in the UK, this archaeological work will be adapted and displayed along with specially commissioned artworks by Michael Branthwaite, Janine Goldsworthy, Dave Griffiths, Hilary Jack and Jenny Steele.

Through the team’s unique, predominantly non-invasive approach, a more accurate picture of the camps has emerged. At the same time, religious and ethical considerations surrounding their investigation have been respected. This work allowed the old gas chambers, mass graves and a large number of objects to be located. The innovative exhibition includes highlights from the Library’s collections, such as a contemporary map of Treblinka, Nazi documentation and testimony from survivors. It examines the history and architecture of the camps and the forensic archaeological process that helped reveal the camp’s history. The exhibition also explores the application of art as a means to provide access to scientific and historic data.

Sit, I Don’t: Manchester School of Art

16 June 2016, Manchester School of Art 

Interactive Arts badgeSit, I Don’tIA Symposium #1 is an event exploring the innovative perspective that BA Interactive Arts (Manchester School of Art) occupies as a model of education and a collection of singular practices. The symposium is organised by Helen Collet, Olivia Glasser and Dave Griffiths.

Through taking an autonomous stand on the formation of their art-school educational experiences, comes the freedom for our students to discover and place new practices in wider contexts: Your adventure in the force of creativity translates into productive action in the world”.  The symposium features presentations by guest speakers and recent graduates, plus exchanges of practices between a cross-section of current students. Plus the launch of Interactive Arts’ Badge Campaign.

With: Kim McAleese (Grand Union), Rob Carter & Lauren Velvick (ECLUB), Darren Murphy (Forma) and Sarah Unwin (FutureEverything).  The symposium title, Sit, I Don’t stems from ‘Stand, I Don’t’; the Charles Esche/de Appel CP interview in Curating and the Educational Turn (eds. P. O’Neill & M. Wilson, 2010) around understanding art and the educational realm.

BRÖKE: Manchester

Manchester Art Gallery, 14 May 2015, 6-9pm, freeBROKE

BRÖKE was a student-curated engagement project organised by Dave Griffiths and Chara Lewis with Kate Jesson as part of Manchester School of Art’s Unit X.  BRÖKE culminated in a Thursday Late gallery takeover event in response to MAG’s summer design-based exhibitions, House Proud and Eastern Exchange.  During two weeks immersion in the learning programme, students observed public engagement in the gallery, and critically discussed issues raised by both shows – including the borders between design and art practices, and questions of value, austerity, consumerism and sustainability. The event included interactive engagement, tours, video and  interventions by the students and invited artists, including a furniture delivery performance, making and parading a quilt banner, plus netsuke, upcycled pallets, ideal interior design, percussion & song, and kintsukuori workshop using smashed ceramics.

VideoFAG: Toronto

RSN UKFilm Material Soup at VideoFAG, Augusta Ave, Toronto, 16 December 2014, 7.30pm

Curated by Mary Stark: “Film Material Soup presents a diverse range of approaches to artist film: studio tests with sculptural forms; projected light and shadow; repetitive actions performed for the camera; photochemical sonic processes; rhythmic interrogation of the filmstrip and the video codec; romantic technological obsolescence; animated microfilm; far flung manmade habitats; flickering urban wilds; data traced through peripheral landscapes.”

Featuring: Jenny Baines, Jo Byrne, Annie Carpenter, Chris Paul Daniels, Joe Duffy, Dave Griffiths, Ben Gwilliam, Nick Jordan, Sam Meech, James Snazell and Mary Stark.

Videofag is a storefront cinema and performance lab in Toronto’s Kensington market dedicated to the creation and exhibition of video, film, new media, and live art.