Thursday, 18 December 2014

Playtime at Cornerhouse, Manchester

Playtime exhibition at Cornerhouse, Manchester

For this exhibition the artists took inspiration from Cornerhouse’s iconic brick structure and Jacques Tati’s 1967 comedy film Playtime which follows an American tourist and a befuddled Frenchman as they negotiate a bafflingly modern Paris.

Niklas Goldbach's Habita C3B depicts a nearly deserted urban environment populated by a handful of identical men engaged in an unknown mission. The characters chase a man who breaks from the group through the labyrinthine architecture of Paris's Front de Seine district.

The film is shown on a loop and although it can be watch from any point, I was pleased to have entered at a time when the characters were walking as opposed to running. This aided my enjoyment of the gradual increase in pace and tension that is built up as the chase progresses.

For Bouncer, Gabriel Lester installed a sequence of wooden swing doors in the gallery leading the audience through an obstacle course from one side of the gallery to the other. I became very conscious of the person behind me as the noise from the slapping doors fills the gallery.

Naomi Kashiwagi's work Swingtime continues on the interactive theme. She installed a couple of swings in the gallery. The area that the swings inhabit is carpeted with a foamy mat material to cushion any impact of landing on the floor.

As one swings, a swooshing sound accompanies the back and forth movements. I cannot remember the last time I had been on a swing, and participating in this artwork reminded me of the freeing feeling that engaging in such a simple action can bring.

1 comment:

Unknown said...

This exhibition was so much fun!