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30 Sep 2010

UnSpooling - Artists & Cinema at Cornerhouse

Ming Wong, Life and Death in Venice, 2009

UnSpooling - Artists & Cinema


2 Oct 2010 - 9 Jan 2011 Gallery Opening Times: Mon: Closed, Tue - Sat: 12:00 - 20:00 & Sun: 12:00 - 18:00

+ 44 161 200 1500

70 Oxford Street
Manchester M1 5NH

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Michaël Borremans (Belgium) / David Claerbout (Belgium) / Cartune Xprez (USA) / Ben Gwilliam & Matt Wand (UK) / Roman Kirschner (Austria) / Sally Golding (AUS) / Kerry Laitala (USA) / Wayne Lloyd (UK) / Sheena Macrae (Canada) / Elizabeth McAlpine (UK) / Juhana Moisander (Finland) / Alex Pearl (UK) / Greg Pope (UK/Norway) / Mario Rossi (UK) / Gebhard Sengmüller (Austria) / Harald Smykla (Germany/UK) / Ming Wong (Singapore) / Stefan Zeyen (Germany)

A series of fly-posters reconstruct Jean-Luc Godard's infamous long take from Weekend; a new restaurant canopy creates a portal into the fantastic and a guerrilla- style re-enactment of Luchino Visconti's Death in Venice are just some of the things art lovers and cinema-goers alike may encounter as they explore the work of 19 artists dispersed throughout Cornerhouse and beyond this Autumn.

Celebrating 25 years of Cornerhouse and produced as part of Abandon Normal Devices, the curators, Andrew Bracey and Dave Griffiths present UnSpooling – Artists & Cinema, a large and ambitious group exhibition that straddles two giant bodies of reference – art and cinema.

This exhibition seeks to present contemporary artists' current reflections and interpretations of cinema. Whether picking it apart, creating personal archives or playfully nodding to its forms and characteristics, the show presents unexpected models of the moving image and explores how something so intimate has become so pervasive. UnSpooling – Artists & Cinema, gathers a wide range of works that explore text, image, sound, chemistry, gesture and spoken word, through painting, drawing, film and video from the last decade, as well as an impressive line-up of performances, new commissions, architectural and public interventions, and a selected film programme.

New commissions cut to the heart of cinema and bring out its hybrid anarchistic side: Stefan Zeyen presents Weekend (2010), a series of fly-posters reconstructing Jean-Luc Godard's infamous long take from Weekend that will track the outside wall of Cornerhouse. Alex Pearl presents Pearlville (2010), a series of lo-fi and improvised films shot each day in his makeshift temporary film factory that was based at Islington Mill in Salford in early August. Wayne Lloyd re-tells Val Guest's famous Manchester-set 60's crime film with one-off spoken-word and drawing performance, Hell is a City (2010) that will mark the launch of the show. Juhana Moisander, meanwhile, digs up Cornerhouse folklore for a series of uncanny video interventions and Mario Rossi's new restaurant canopy Thief of Baghdad (2010), reconfigures the building as a portal into the fantastic.

Cinema gets a great deal of recycling and rehashing:
Acclaimed Singaporean artist Ming Wong, creates his very-own 'world cinema' in his piece, Life and Death in Venice (2009), which features a guerrilla-style re-enactment of Luchino Visconti's 1971 film, Death in Venice. This video installation follows premieres in Singapore at Third Floor and the 17th Biennale of Sydney. Elizabeth McAlpine's Hyena Stomp (2006), extracts and repositions single film-frames of actors with their eyes closed into a re-rendering of an iconic Frank Stella painting, tracking the repetitions and gestures inherent in popular media. Sheena Macrae's Odyssey (2006) presents a remix of Stanley Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey, reconfigured as abstracted slit-scans, toying with the films original sci-fi speculations of infinity and eternity. Austrian artist Gebhard Sengmüller presents Slide Movie (2006), an infernal clattering installation of 24 slide projectors that give rise to a film sequence from Sam Peckinpah's, Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia, through individual static slide frames.

The cinematic also explodes from fixed and flat screens to explore new possibilities in a four-hour spectacular event, featuring Ben Gwilliam & Matt Wand, Kerry Laitala, Sally Golding, Greg Pope and experimental animation project Cartune Xprez.

Elsewhere, artists unite themselves with the cinematic more readily:
Harald Smykla adds to his ongoing Movie Protocol series, with a live performance and durational drawing of a special film to be revealed at the shows launch. Roman Kirschner's Roots (2005-06) is a dreamlike screen sculpture of iron crystals that appear in a cyclical process of growing and dissolving. Michaël Borremans' The German (2004-07), reflects an uncanny worldview in his scale model of a 'black box' drawing on the language of stage and cinema. On a constant loop, David Claerbout's Bordeaux Piece (2004) plunges visitors into a lengthy film that presents a dramatic domestic episode, composed of near identical yet separate 12 minute sequences, where the plot and characters are overtaken by subtle shifts in light or weather, matching that of the gallery opening times.

Roundtable Discussion
Fri 12 Nov, 13:00 – 19:00
FREE, Booking required

Join us for this roundtable discussion co-organised by Dr. Felicia Chan (University of Manchester) and Cornerhouse brings together Dr. Janet Harbord (Reader in Film & Screen Media, Queen Mary, University of London), Dr. Vicky Lowe (Lecturer in Drama and Screen Studies, University of Manchester), Sophia Crilly (Director & curator of Bureau Gallery), Dr Aleksandar Dundjerovic (Senior Lecturer in Drama & Music, The University of Manchester and artist Wayne Lloyd, to explore performance art practices and how they engage with and expand film and cinema, as well as questioning practice as research and its value within the academic field. Plus an exclusive talk from artist Ming Wong.


This exhibition is a co-commission between Cornerhouse and Abandon Normal Devices (AND). AND is a major new regional festival of New Cinema & Digital Culture and forms part of WE PLAY – the Northwest's cultural legacy programme for the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.