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The symposium aimed to bring together ideas, specifically arising from the practices and processes of art about subjective experiences of temporality in art, about how different art practices 'mark' time in art works, about spectator experiences of temporality, about the uses of film and photography to record fleeting moments, about the duration of performances and also about what may be described as the political aspects of our experiences of time passing. Discussions following the presentations and at the artists' panel at the end of the day focused on a diverse range of issues: on the role of sound in the art works and its relation to body rhythm and subjective temporality; on ideas about the embodied spectator; feminist perspectives on issues to do with embodiment and temporality; on the materiality of film; on spectatorship and experimental film; on duration in performance practices; on how artists work with concepts and practices from other disciplines including the sciences; on the relevance of various philosophical strands from work engaged with time, including Heidigger, Deleuze and Merleau-Ponty, and about connections between these strands and neuroaesthetics, and also on the potential relevance of new scientific developments and discoveries, such as neuroscientific work on time, vision and brain function, on the elastic temporality suggested by the discovery of neutrino activity. There were also numerous questions to individual artists about the construction of particular works and many informal discussions and engagements with participating artists as visitors and delegates encountered the works including a particular interest in the construction of Steve Farrer's Machine which was showing in the boilerhouse along with some of the film-strip material which was used in the making of the piece. This engagement with the artists was a valuable aspect of the event and the exhibition continued through to 6pm on the Saturday with the conclusion of Rachel Gomme's twenty-four hour performance and all of the temporary works have been fully documented.
Extract from exhibition notes:
One More Time: notes on temporality in art
To render time sensible in itself is a task common to the painter, the musician and sometimes the writer.' Giles Deleuze (Deleuze 2003: 64)
The disquieting sense of temporality that we find in art may seem to expand or distort our experience as artists or as spectators, of time passing and this is also emotional, as the passing of time has resonance for the mortal bodies that we live in and the selves we have become, with memories stored up and re-experienced in the present. In general, we expect to continue living at the same rate. And yet, as we connect with a work from moment to moment, this sense may be displaced as in an altered state: time is presented strangely and this moves us. As Deleuze seems to suggest, art may make is see time, feel time. live time differently. One More Time brought together a group of artists working with questions of temporality: marking or recording time in their work through very different practices and yet connected through concerns with human perception, reflexivity, and the embodied subject/spectator.
Both Steve Farrer and William Raban were engaged in making works at the London Film-makers Co-op, related to the structural materialist idea of film as mentioned above. In Raban's expanded works like Take Measure (1973) where the film seem by the audience is measured out according to the distance form the screen and the 'subject' is a film editing device, there is absolute precision in using the instruments and the techniques of film to spatialize time. In Diagonal (1973), three projectors are synchronised to run in a diagonal formation across a wall or screen, showing footage of a the light in the projector gate. The work is also highly performative as an experience of film that is absolutely absorbing for its duration. In One More Time, we have: About Now: MMX , Raban's most recent work which, like the earlier expanded pieces and single screen works like Time Stepping (, offers insights into durée and temporal perception. Steve Farrer 's work The Machine (1981/2011) also expands our consciousness of time passing through cinematic processes. In this work, film has been shot with a deconstructed Bolex film camera with the shutter removed so that duration is recorded without frames, and then projected using another specially adapted 16mm projection device on to the inside of what seems like a very large zoetrope or 'biscuit tin' shape where the spectators watch the images passing from the inside. Rod Stoneman describes this effect: When the film is run at the original speed at which it was shot, it is paradoxically both in constant motion and at the same time static in relation to the projection surface... We thus have a film record of something close to Bergson's 'durée presented in an artwork, in an expanded and immersive form.
David Howells has been engaged in making an experimental work on 'the zoom', inspired by the pivotal work of experimental film: Michael Snow's Wavelength, (1967), consisting of one long slow zoom across a city loft apartment ; which is significant as being seen as the first really 'structural' film; being explicit in its aims to place the spectator in a position of heightened tension within the cinematic apparatus, as the camera moves steadily forward shifting the horizon of 'now'.
Laura Malacart also has a film work here that she has described as an 'expanded history' where 'film time' dilutes chronological time. In this very moving piece, we experience, from the place of the embodied spectator, some measure of haptic discomfort as singer and voice are constrained moment by moment and the history of a song, the singing of a song are temporally reconfigured. In its engagement with the politics of the female voice and vocal agency, Malacart's work is conceptually engaged both with feminist perspectives and also political aspects of temporality. Chronocyclography was used as applied science of in the early twentieth century: time and motion men, recording task efficiency with little regard for the human subjectivity of the recorded bodies Drawing on these photographic recordings of figures in time and motion and on the work of Jules Etienne Marey and other early chronophotographers, Paul St George's series of pictures interrogates this practice and employs contemporary digital techniques to imagine the dream-worlds of his subjects. Strange temporality: the mapping of experience through the body, is a profoundly important dimension of Rona Lee's work, in particular the pieces here from the National Oceanography Centre residency. Lee's film work here is the record of a 'faux experiment': a relational mapping through the body of inconstant temporal measurements and her plaster reliefs are also temporal maps made in this spirit of 'an-exact' science. Looking at these works, our expectations shift away from the purely mathematical or indexical, as we experience the resonance of the artist's own temporal activity in the making the work. The strangeness of embodied time is also central to the performances of Claire Zakiewicz, Leibniz (Ernst Fischer and Helen Spackman) and Rachel Gomme. In a series of works where she engages the audience in a live performance of drawing, Zakiewicz takes up Daniel Stern's concept of the 'vitality affect': '...qualities of feeling that occur do not fit into our existing lexicon... better captured by dynamic, kinetic terms, such as "surging," "fading aways," "fleeting," "explosive," "crescendo," ' Here, she takes breath as a countable body movement and working with shape, time, motion, intensity and number as properties 'held in common by all modalities of perception' which may be translated. In the Leibniz works, time is marked literally on the body. The simple actions performed in Allotment make reference to mortality, natural phenomena, and cycles of death and re-birth. Traces are left on the body and again, breath and heartbeat mark our human temporality; but in these works, spectator time becomes elastic and we are transfixed by cycles of stillness and motion. A transfixing sense of stillness and a profound sense of ‘time outside time’ are also strangely present in the witnessing of Rachel Gomme's durational performance work. Repetition and transformations of material are also present. The work evokes aspects of inner time that: ...could not be given to us as ideas except in a carnal experience. (Merleau-Ponty: 150). This very moving work opens up a shared space between artist and spectator as the work emerges. At London Met, The Hours (for Penelope) was presented over a duration of 24 hours in the window of the Libeskind Building.
All of the artists' presentations in the One More Time symposium arise from the artists' own practice, from the space of experiential knowledge and all of these works are engaged in 'painting' in the moment and drawing on the world.
Anne Robinson, curator of One More Time, October, 2011
Deleuze, G. (2003) Francis Bacon: the Logic of Sensation (trans. D. W. Smith), London: Continuum
Exhibition: Works in show: Steve Farrer: The Machine, film installation(1981-2011) Rachel Gomme: Hour (for Penelope), durational performance (2011) David Howells: tbc Rona Lee: Ten Atlantic Days, (2009)
10 x plaster reliefs 297mm x 210mm x 15mm.
A sailor went to sea, sea, sea to see what he could see, see, see. (2010-11)
Time-lapse video 2mins 50secs Leibniz: performances: extracts from: Ghost Letters (2008) & Allotment (2011) Laura Malacart: Mi Piace, video, 13', (2008) William Raban: About Now MMX, 35mm film, 27mins, on DSVD, (2010) Paul St George: Chronocyclophotography series:
Woman folding clothes after pressing with an iron (on an ironing board) (a) Woman folding clothes after pressing with an iron (on an ironing board) (b) Woman preparing batter for pancakes by first breaking eggs (a) Woman preparing batter for pancakes by first breaking eggs (b) Woman tossing and turning pancakes in order to cook them evenly (a) Woman tossing and turning pancakes in order to cook them evenly (b)
Claire Zakiewicz: performance: Pulmonic Ingressive, Vitality Affects & Gravity (2011)
Here is further information and full artists' bios.