Potential Architecture

This weekend I went to visit the Potential Architecture exhibition at the Ambika P3 which is in the basement area of one of the campuses of the University of Westminster. Alongside the exhibition were some talks that I attended.

The 3 talks/performances I went to see were:

Sandie Macrae in conversation with Sean Griffiths
Sunday 12 April, 3pm.
Sandie Macrae is Director of ROOM Artspace where an installation by Sean Griffiths has recently been on show.

Wayward Geometry
Monday 13 April, 7:30pm.
Curated by Dissolve Specific Objects, a London-based event series promoting improvised electronics and computer music. Set within the exhibition itself, this event will feature a programme of electronic music and sound art exploring the intersection between architecture, space and sound. Includes a site-specific performance of The Geometry of Sentiment by saxophonist John Butcher.

Artists Close to Architecture – Architecture Close to Art
Tuesday 14 April, 6:30pm.
Potential ArchitectureArtes Mundi 6, 2015 and last year’s Sensing Spaces at the Royal Academy all included artists and architects whose work exists in the mid-ground between art and architecture. The curators of these three exhibitions; David Thorp (Guest Curator, Potential Architecture), Karen Mackinnon (Artes Mundi) and Kate Goodwin (Royal Academy), discuss their approaches, the issues explored in the exhibitions, and the artists and architects involved.

These kind of events are really important for me to attend. I am able to meet other artists and network with working creative practitioners and meet other students. These three events were all about the use of space, sound, architecture and art. They were very discussive events where everyone got really involved in the conversations of the use of architecture in a gallery space. Because the exhibition Potential Architecture featured 4 qualified and practicing architects who are making art, I felt that I could really connect to artwork as at the moment I feel that I am an artist who makes music. Being a part of a growing discussion/conversation about architecture, sound and art/gallery space is an important factor in being an artist – getting involved and being part of the conversation.

After the talk with Sean Griffiths and Sandie Macrae, I was able to talk to them both about their work and for any advice. Because Sean is an architect and part of his installation was inspired by John Cage’s ‘4:33’ I was able to talk to him about architecture and music even though he is more experienced in the architecture world and I am more experienced with music. I discussed with both Sean and Sandie about my installation piece which then led me to network with a lady who is working on senses and spaces. I was able to discuss with her about binaural and 360 degree sound or which she then asked for my details and website.

The event the evening after was a performance/concert evening that was part of the Potential Architecture. Dissolve Specific Objects and Ambika P3 present Wayward Geometry that featured a site specific performance by the saxophonist John Butcher where he played two experimental and very virtuosic pieces, The Geometry of Sentiment part 1 and part 2 within the installation pieces presented in the Potential Architecture exhibition. Part 1 was performed in Sean Griffiths installation piece. Alongside these performances was a programme of acousmatic and computer music that was diffused over a sound array system – the same as what is setup in university that I have had the opportunity to experiment with with my installation. This programme included music by Iannis Xenakis – Orient-Occident (1960) and Yutaka Makino – Cascade (2014) as well as Curtis Roads – Pictor Alpha (2003) and Florian Hecker – Ciz-Glemp 2 (2004). This was a really lovely event that was full of a lot of art and music students. Seeing similar set up to what we have in the university at the moment was really nice to see. I loved it because it was like going to one big listening event. Because it system was in the basement of the university and the size of the space was quite vast and had a very high ceiling the sound filled the room and made it very spatial especially as I was sat right in the middle.

The last evening I felt was the most useful for me because the curator from Artes Mundi was there. The talk was a discussion between David Thorp, who was the Curator for Potential Architecture, Karen Mackinnon – the curator of Artes Mundi and Kate Goodwin- the curator for the Royal Academy (but in this talk she was specifically talking about one exhibition that was on at the RA, Sensing Spaces). It was interesting to see how each of the curators had different ideas and thought processes for what artists they wanted in the gallery spaces and the layout for what artist should go where are why. They were all really passionate about the particular exhibitions and artists they were talking about and it was really exciting to see them discuss architecture and art and how they see the two growing together and becoming more ‘normal’ seeing them both in a gallery space. After the talk I was able to speak to the curator of Artes Mundi, Karen Machinnon, about the exhibition this year and how much we both loved Ragnar Kjartansson piece that was shown in Ffoto gallery this year. This was a really good networking opportunity for me.

Overall the last few days have been really useful for me, especially to see what is going in London with this kind of work. it was also really great see stuff from Cardiff coming to London and being involved in this big discussion between architecture and art.

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