This edition of the Audio Arts series includes, on CD 1, contributions from Michael Craig-Martin, Sutapa Biswas, Daniel Libeskind, George Herold and on CD 2, recordings from Liverpool Biennial 2004
Audio Arts: Volume 22 No 4 & Volume 23 No 1, CD 1, Track 1 – Michael Craig Martin
Audio Arts: Volume 22 No 4 & Volume 23 No 1, CD 1, Track 2 – Sutapa Biswas
Audio Arts: Volume 22 No 4 & Volume 23 No 1, CD 1, Track 3 – Paul Noble
Audio Arts: Volume 22 No 4 & Volume 23 No 1, CD 1, Track 4 – Daniel Libeskind
Audio Arts: Volume 22 No 4 & Volume 23 No 1, CD 1, Track 5 – Georg Herold
Audio Arts: Volume 22 No 4 & Volume 23 No 1, CD 2, Track 1 – Jarvis Cocker
Audio Arts: Volume 22 No 4 & Volume 23 No 1, CD 2, Track 2 – Alexis Harding
Audio Arts: Volume 22 No 4 & Volume 23 No 1, CD 2, Track 3 – Adrian George
Audio Arts: Volume 22 No 4 & Volume 23 No 1, CD 2, Track 4 – Valeska Soares
Audio Arts: Volume 22 No 4 & Volume 23 No 1, CD 2, Track 5 – Jill Magid
Audio Arts: Volume 22 No 4 & Volume 23 No 1, CD 2, Track 6 – Dias & Riedweg
Audio Arts: Volume 22 No 4 & Volume 23 No 1, CD 2, Track 7 – Germaine Koh
Audio Arts: Volume 22 No 4 & Volume 23 No 1, CD 2, Track 8 – Satch Hoyt
Audio Arts: Volume 22 No 4 & Volume 23 No 1, CD 2, Track 9 – Luis Camnitzer
Audio Arts: Volume 22 No 4 & Volume 23 No 1, CD 2, Track 10 – John Davies
Audio Arts: Volume 22 No 4 & Volume 23 No 1, CD 2, Track 11 – Amanda Coogan
Michael Craig-Martin – Surfacing
This interview starts with Michael Craig-Martin in the public space outside the Milton Keynes Gallery, where he talks about his commissioned work on the exterior of the gallery. Available on CD This resulted in painting the entire building an intense magenta onto which a green drawer in three quarter perspective is depicted. The impact of this dramatic intervention immediately sets the building aside from the monochromatic register of most of the architecture in Milton Keynes and makes the gallery highly visible In this urban environment. The artist discusses the implications of working on an architectural scale as well as his particular reasons and criteria for choosing colours of such a high intensity and adds, ‘I really loved the opportunity of essentially turning the gallery inside out’. Moving into the gallery, he then talks about his choices of colour, ‘my idea of using colour is to do with the differentiation one thing from another… but all of the colours I keep as high as possible so as to have as much an assertion of the moment as I can get’. The conversation continues in the central gallery space which is covered with monochromatic wallpaper which he describes as a ‘skin of imagery’ depicting eleven ubiquitous every day objects such as a mobile phone, light bulb, shoe, fire extinguisher and fork, that ‘go between the particular and the general’ which are visualized to be ‘specific’ rather than generic. Brightly coloured small canvasses punctuate the monochromatic surface yet continue the motif of the drawing. Then moving onto the Cube Gallery the artist discusses his vivid canvasses which he describes as ‘transcriptions of well known paintings’, with titles including: Reconstructing Piero (blue), Reconstructing Piero (pink). He comments that he uses art historical presidents as ‘Ready Mades’, in order to draw the works into the present. Then moving to the third space with six canvasses he talks again about his vocabulary and choice of depicted objects and how they are juxtaposed on the surface and the resulting narratives that the viewer attempts to construct. He finally talks about the particular characteristics of making an exhibition at MKG, and responds to the inaccurate categorization of ‘conceptual art’ in relation to his practice over the years. He then remembers his early work, The Oak Tree and Glass of Water, which was recorded for the first issue of Audio Arts.
Interview by William Furlong, September 2004
Sutapa Biswas – Café gallery (Projects)
Sutapa Biswas work has for the last seventeen years been concerned with feminism, cultural identity and memory. Her conversation during her recent show at the Café Gallery addresses this combination of vision in her two films Birdsong (2004, 16mm film) and Magnesium Bird (2004, Digital film). The processes inherent in her work – how Birdsong references both the ‘magical moment of the first encounter’ a George Stubbs painting, Proust’s Remembrance of Things Past and a chance remark by her son – are drawn out. The conversation ranges from the technicalities of the films to Biswas ambivalence towards ‘those moments of motherhood that imprint themselves on the memory.’ Magnesium Bird is discussed with reference to the constructions of the numerous different magnesium birds, the personal loss of her father and the spectacle of the birds being set alight on a stormy day in the grounds of Harewood House. Biswas discusses the cross-cultural references in her work from her Indian heritage, Edward Lear’s drawings of birds, his evocative poetry and the birds she heard singing after her fathers death. Biswas engagement with the themes of loss and desire, the ephemeral and the charged are explored in this interview.
Interview by Jean Wainwright, June 2004
Paul Noble was interviewed at the Whitechapel Art Gallery during his solo exhibition of drawings, sculpture and film which centred on his ongoing eight-year drawing project Nobson Newtown. Here he describes the background to the project including his design of the three dimensional font called ‘Nobfont’ on which the buildings in his drawings are based. He also talks about the references in his work to the relationship between text and image in Chinese landscape painting, the theme of animal liberation in his large sculpture Egg, his recurring use of the egg motif in his sculpture, film and drawing and the final realisation of the Nobson Newtown project.
Interview by Helen Sumpter, September 2004
Daniel Libeskind – The Space of Encounter
Daniel Libeskind talks about his practice in the first UK survey exhibition of his architecture at the Barbican, London. The conversation highlights the way that his buildings are steeped in narrative and metaphor – that they have to be much more than functional shells but rather engage with the community around them. Both referring to his background as a musician as well as his love of drawing and the hand rendered – Libeskind discusses major projects such as his model and plans for the just begun redevelopment of the World Trade Centre site and his move back to New York from Berlin. His design concerns of unity and fragmentation, metaphor, narrative and the phenomenological are woven into his interview. His concern that buildings can be much more than functional shells and should stir a wide array of emotional and intellectual responses becomes evident. Libeskind explains how his multidisciplinary approach has sustained him though projects as diverse as the Jewish Museum in Berlin to the recently rejected extension of the Victoria and Albert museum and smaller projects such as the Studio Weill Mallorca. Libeskind’s love of engaging in the political and public realm,the unpredictable and uncertain becomes evident in this interview.
Interview by Jean Wainwright, September 2004
Georg Herold – Bollinger Wars
Georg Herold’s practice spans over 30 years and in this conversation he reveals some of the radical and subversive ideas which have gained him an international reputation. As an artist born in East Germany shortly after World War 2 who moved to the West in 1973 – Herold discusses the ideas of nationalism, identity and art training which underpin his work. His wish to engage with sociocultural issues and art history intersperses his dialogue – revealing his enduring humour and the drive behind his provocative titles. Suddenly I Find Myself Surrounded by Total Arseholes – a work constructed from laths of wood screwed together in a rough outline of Germany – provokes a debate about German names. Another work Check Please is discussed with tongue in cheek asides denying in the conversation a simple reading. Herold’s DIY aesthetic – house bricks cemented onto raw canvas or stacked Vodka bottles – are provided with layered readings as a walk through his show at the Anthony Reynolds Gallery is enacted.
Interview by Jean Wainwright, May 2004
Liverpool Biennial 2004
The Liverpool Biennial is the UK’s only festival of international contemporary art and embraces the character and culture of Liverpool. This ‘vox pop’ provides an insight into the diversity of a festival on this scale which includes a wide variety of specially commissioned international artworks, performances and interventions – as well as major art prizes such as John Moores 23. Interviews with artists take place in the Tate Gallery Liverpool as part of the International 04, the Independents (in various parts of the city) and the John Moores (with the prize winner Alexis Harding). The interviews provide a juxtaposition between artistic and curatorial responses to the city of Liverpool in a rich mix of diversity and creativity. Interviews by Jean Wainwright, September 2004: Jarvis Cocker, Judge, John Moores (Musician and curator); Alexis Harding, Winner, John Moores (British); Adrian George, Curator, Tate Liverpool; Valeska Soares, International (Brazil, lives and works in New York); Jill Magid, International (American, lives and works in Amsterdam); Dias & Riedweg, International (Brazilian/ Swiss, both work in Rio de Janeiro); Germaine Koh, Intemational (Malaysian, lives in Canada); Satch Hoyt, International (British, lives in New York); Luis Camnitzer, Intemational (Germany/Uruguay, lives and works in New York); John Davies, Independents; Amanda Coogan, International (Irish).