35mm filmstrip performance, 180 mins
Depicting a 20th century view of globalised labour and trade, through an archive of vintage geography teaching filmstrips and multiple projectors. Performed during Film Material Toast, Federation House Manchester, 10 April 2015.
2013, 35mm, handmade Sellotape film loop
Filmstrip projector performance, 120 mins
A live screening of State-approved educational filmstrips, for the purpose of passive observation and cultural reproduction. Slide sets were chosen in response to A Clockwork Orange, and childlike references of its anti-hero (Alex) to high art, exoticism, school, government and violence. They also reflect Anthony Burgess’ ideological role as teacher of elite Malaysian children in Britain’s post-colonial overseas service, and fictional brain-washing methods of the novel’s Ludovico’s Technique. Titles were sampled from my collection of vintage filmstrips, a now-redundant educational multimedia dating from 1950s to 1970s and originating from Britain, USA and USSR, via eBay:
Music Appreciation Series: Pictures at an Exhibition ✽ Spring Adventures ✽ Jimmy Didn’t Listen ✽ Sculpture Today ✽ The Language of Colour I – IV ✽ Favourite Poems About the World of Nature ✽ Housing and Home Life in the Soviet Union ✽ Sharks – Predators of the Deep ✽ The Story of Johnny Appleseed ✽ Life in Vietnam ✽ Let’s Get Ready for School ✽ A Picnic for Dick & His Friends ✽ Adventures in Library Land ✽ Living in the Soviet Union Today ✽ You’re on Parade – Good Grooming ✽ Birds of Our Community ✽ The Story of Valentines Day ✽ South East Asia: Malaysia and Thailand ✽ The Old Stone Age
International Anthony Burgess Foundation, Manchester, 7 – 10 June 2012
Will Carr, Director of IABF: “Well, what’s it going to be then, eh? What does A Clockwork Orange taste like for us: should we eat it up or spit it out? Burgess’ 1962 novel, celebrating its 50th anniversary this year, exerts a vicious power over our imagination. Its powerful themes, such as the relationship of the individual to the state, the terrifying potential of the young, and the possibility or otherwise of redemption, remain entirely contemporary; and its linguistic innovation, totalitarian imagery, fierce ultraviolence and fiercer moral questions are still re-squeezed and re-sucked throughout popular culture. The International Anthony Burgess Foundation is delighted to work with Media LAB at Manchester School of Art to once again rework A Clockwork Orange in new ways and for a new audience.” Organised by Andrea Zapp: “Anthony Burgess’ life and personality, his many talents, together with the complexity of A Clockwork Orange, delivers a fantastic and rich setting for this collaborative venture and the artists’ individual readings. But the violent darkness and depth of the book and its anti-hero also provide a highly controversial subject matter, and therefore a challenge for conceptual ideas. The installations reflect this in their multi-dimensional and mixed media methods – being personal, abstract, literal, reciprocal, sculptural, documentary or playful, and all along drawing subtle lines between the works and ultimately leading to Burgess himself.” Grace Allardyce, Andrew Bracey, James Cook, Miklos Csepely-Knorr, Joe Duffy, Michael Fowdrey, Andrew Glynn, Dave Griffiths, Lisa Joel, Mohammed Koosha and Andrea Zapp Horrorshow White Russians courtesy of Korova Milk Bar, and after-party at Temple of Convenience.
I meant it to stand for the application of a mechanistic morality to a living organism oozing with juice and sweetness […] Eat this sweetish segment or spit it out. You are free’ Anthony Burgess, 1986