Come & Go
This exhibition formed part of a continuing enquiry into observational hierarchies and the exceptional use of surveillance technologies on digital interactions. Pioneering early film of the Serpentine dance is the basis for this contemporary rework. A dance is filmed from above, at high speed, and choreographed in response to drones, spaces of limbo, entanglement and entrapment. Custom built software creates an interactive map of the floor space which ramps the playback from slow-motion to real time and back again, with ‘dead’ areas permitting non detection.
Central to this research, made during the height of the refugee crisis, was the uncomfortable creep of ‘deep borders’ from physical into digital space. The work questions inequalities concerning freedom of movement, gender, race and technological division.
Come & Go was a Quays Culture R&D project supported by Salford University, and enabled by Arts Council England and the Art and Design Research Council. It was exhibited at The Lowry, Jan 2016 as a prototype interactive video installation and alongside the first digital exhibition in The Lowry; Right Here Right Now. This first stage of production, technical development and interactive testing prepared for exhibiting in 2017 at Millennium Galleries, Sheffield (Everything Flows, June - August 2017) alongside a catalogue. The work formed the basis of a collaborative artists’ bookwork Above and Beyond with artist-writer Emma Cocker
(NTU). Come & Go was reviewed in Art Monthly (July 2017) and received an award at the Surveillance Studies Network Art Prize (June 2018). An interview with Butler was published on the Surveillance and Society blog site April 2018. Public presentations were made at The Lowry, Museums Sheffield and the Surveillance Studies Network Biennale 2018.
A paper was accepted for the Surveillance Studies Network Biennale, June 2020 but this has now been rescheduled for 2021.
Stop Frame testing Lowry
This project contains further videos that can accessed via the full case study below.
This work takes the Serpentine dance as its reference to consider a shift in point of view from one which is on the ground linear and anchored to one which is from above, in flight and remote. Initially tests with a highspeed camera took place at Sheffield Hallam University with performance artist Lisa Watts.
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