A rare opportunity to visit the renowned nature reserve and decommissioned military site on Orford Ness, featuring two reworked sculptural and audio installations from Artangel's summer 2021 group exhibition 'Afterness'.
Alice Channer's sculpture comprises a tangle of bramble-like growths, shaped from rolled aluminium tubes with sharp thorns welded onto the metal, that have taken over an abandoned shelter on Orford Ness. The title of the sculpture refers to military trials conducted on Orford Ness between 1938 and 1959 whose purpose was to test the strength of the bodies of aircraft. Channer’s sculpture suggests both nature’s resilience and the potential fall-out from experiments that can produce virulent mutations.Ilya Kaminsky, I See a Silence (2021)
Ilya Kaminsky, I See a Silence (2021)
Ilya Kaminsky's I See a Silence is a lyric work combining poetry and prose. Drawn to the singular ecology of the terrain, and the flora and fauna that both preceded and survived decades of military research, Kaminsky’s haunting poetry of place evokes a landscape of the imagination. Originally experienced on headsets whilst walking across the windswept expanses of Orford Ness, a new version can now be experienced inside Black Beacon, a structure built by the British military in 1929 to test early radio navigation systems. Produced by audio designer Axel Kacoutié, I See a Silence features the voices of Neil Brennan, Ilya Kaminsky and Zakia Sewell and extracts from field recordings made on Orford Ness over many years by Iain Chambers and Chris Watson.
April – June 2022: Saturday and Sunday (including bank holidays)
Entry times: 10:00 – 14:00 BST (last admission on the outbound ferry 13:40)
Iain Chambers is a London-based composer, producer and sound artist, whose work explores specific locations and their changing sounds across time, as in Concrete Paris (2021); The Secrets of Orford Ness (2020), The House of Sound (2017), and City of Women (2018). In 2019 Iain launched the independent record label Persistence of Sound, creating a new space for musique concrète, field recordings, and the uncategorizable sounds in between.
In 2015 Iain staged the first ever concerts in Tower Bridge’s Bascule Chambers, transforming the structure into a huge resonant chamber. In 2003 Iain co-founded Langham Research Centre, an electronic music ensemble using Cold War era technology to compose new music. The group also create new realisations of work by composers including John Cage, Alvin Lucier and Christian Wolff, using unusual analogue instrumentation.
Alice Channer lives and works on the edges of London. Channer's forms and materials are found in the social and sensual worlds of industrial and organic processes. Over long periods of time, she immerses herself in industrial and natural materials and production processes to find forms within them that can be shown as sculpture. For her new project for Orford Ness, Channer has found inspiration in its resilient vegetation and in vestiges of its former military life.
Channer has exhibited widely over the last 15 years, and is currently represented by Konrad Fischer Galerie, Berlin and Düsseldorf.
Graham Cunnington is a musician with a long-term practice of working with found instrumentation and sounds. As a founding member of the experimental creative collective Test Dept, he has produced sound-works and large-scale film and installation pieces with a focus on political inquiry and location response since the early 80s. Cunnington wrote and performed the autobiographical theatre show ‘Pain’ and has worked on many multi-disciplinary creative collaborations over the years. He has also been involved in union activism and was recently guest co-presenter of the 2021 Mark Fisher Memorial Lecture for Goldsmiths College.
Brian d’Souza is an award-winning sound artist, DJ, music producer and live performer. His compositions fuse field recording from around the globe with electro-acoustic production techniques to create ‘acoustic ecologies’ that are centred on exploring the psychological and physical benefits of sound. As ‘Auntie Flo’ he's been “taking World Music into the future” (the Guardian) since 2012. He has released three acclaimed albums, with his most recent ‘Radio Highlife’ (Brownswood, 2018) winning the SAY Award.
D'Souza’s radio station Ambient Flo broadcasts 24 hours a day and features monthly on WorldWide FM.
Axel Kacoutié is a multi-award-winning audio artist, working with sound, music and words to challenge the familiar and revive the magic in the mundane. His work has featured on the BBC, Channel 4, NOWNESS and the Barbican.
He is also the Sound Designer and theme composer for the Guardian's daily news podcast, Today in Focus.
Ilya Kaminsky was born in Odessa, former Soviet Union in 1977, and arrived to the United States in 1993, when his family was granted asylum by the American government. He is the author of Deaf Republic (Graywolf Press) and Dancing In Odessa (Tupelo Press) and co-editor and co-translated many other books, including Ecco Anthology of International Poetry (Harper Collins) and Dark Elderberry Branch: Poems of Marina Tsvetaeva (Alice James Books). Deaf Republic was The New York Times’ Notable Book for 2019, and was also named Best Book of 2019 by Washington Post, Times Literary Supplement, the Guardian and New Statesman.
Kaminsky’s poems have been translated into over twenty languages, and his books are published in many countries. In 2019, he was selected by BBC as “one of the 12 artists that changed the world.” He currently holds the Bourne Chair in Poetry at Georgia Institute of Technology and lives in Atlanta, USA.
Paul Maheke was born in Brive-la-Gaillarde, France and lives and works in London, UK. Since studying at ENSA Paris-Cergy, Paris and Open School East, London, Maheke’s works and performances have been shown at Tate Modern, London (2017), the 57th Venice Biennale (Diaspora Pavilion, 2017), Centre Pompidou, Paris (2018), Lafayette Anticipations, Paris (2018), Baltic Triennial, Tallinn (2018), Manifesta, Palermo (2018). In 2018 the Chisenhale Gallery in London hosted a solo exhibition of his work, which later travelled to Vleeshal CCA, Middelburg in January 2019. In 2019 his performances were shown at the 58th Venice Biennale and at ICA Miami in addition to a solo exhibition at Triangle France, Marseille.
Through primarily dance and a collaborative practice comprising performance, installation, sound and video, Maheke considers the potential of the body as an archive in order to examine how memory and identity are formed and constituted.
Paul Maheke was also part of Artangel's programme Thinking Time, 2020.
Emma McNally lives and works in London. Her graphite drawings are a rhythmic exploration of entanglement and turbulence across scales, times and spaces. Multitudes of different marks conjure up dynamic weather systems and matter moving through different states: cycles of water, particles of carbon, radioactive fallout. They suggest an attempt to chart shifting systems of immense complexity, drawing on soundings, data visualisations, electronic microscopes, particle collision chambers and satellite imaging.
McNally has worked for many years in studios by the River Thames – her drawing echoing the pulsing activity of the city and reflecting the river's ebb and flow. The first six of an ongoing series of large-scale drawings, Choral Fields, were shown in Mirrorcity at the Hayward Gallery in 2016 and another large group on Cockatoo island in the Sydney Biennale in 2018.
Rachel Pimm was born in Harare, 1984 and lives Northamptonshire, UK. They work across sculpture, text, photography, video and performance to explore environments and their materialities, biochemistries, histories and politics, with an interest in queer, feminist and post-colonial materialisms, natural histories and resource extraction, in addition to the potential of surfaces and matter to transform.
Pimm’s work has been featured in programmes at the Serpentine Gallery, Whitechapel Gallery, Jerwood Space, Chisenhale Gallery and The Royal Academy – all in London between 2014-20 – as well as internationally across Europe and the USA. Residencies include Loughborough University Chemical Engineering, Gurdon institute of Genetics at Cambridge University, Rabbit Island, Michigan, USA and was Whitechapel Gallery Writer in Residence 2019/20. They are currently lecturing at UAL and have a forthcoming commission with Arts Catalyst in 2021/22.
Tatiana Trouvé was born in Calabria, Italy and grew up in Dakar, Senegal. Following her artistic studies at the Villa Arson in Nice and in the Netherlands, she moved to Paris in 1995 where she continues to live and work. Her aims are to create a place where the coordinates of space and time, the arrangement of the material, the physical and the psychic, organize convergences between the real, the imaginary and the phantasmic.
Known for her “Bureau d'Activités Implicites” (Bureau of Implicit Activities) and for several site-specific projects in Europe and the US, Trouvé’s sculptures and installations blur the boundaries between the domestic and the natural, the mineral and the living, the two dimensions of drawing and the three dimensions of volume. The rules and laws that determine our reality are recomposed in worlds where new coexistences are formulated. Trouvé was awarded the Marcel Duchamp Prize in France in 2007, followed by a solo presentation at the centre Georges Pompidou, and has exhibited her work in numerous museums around the world over the past two decades.
Chris Watson was a founding member of the Sheffield based experimental music group Cabaret Voltaire during the late 1970’s and early 1980’s. Since then he has developed a particular and passionate interest in recording the wildlife sounds of animals and habitats around the world. As a composer and sound recordist Watson specialises in creating spatial sound installations which feature a strong sense and spirit of place.
His television work includes many programmes in the David Attenborough ‘Life’ series including ‘The Life of Birds’ which won a BAFTA Award for ‘Best Factual Sound’ in 1996, and as the location sound recordist for the BBC series ‘Frozen Planet’ which also won a BAFTA Award for ‘Best Factual Sound’ (2012).