Re: turn, Heong Gallery, Cambridge,  2019

This clip documents  the first of two improvised compositions. A&C collaborate in real time to negotiate the making of a combined moving image. Using animated gestures and still drawings they perform a game of joint placement, comment on the process as it unfolds, and invite the audience to reflect on both the specific event and broader issues of human collaboration.

Using prepared imagery, including some related to the current exhibition "Kip Gresham: The Art of Collaboration", our pre-programmed controller selects imagery from our  pool of possibilities in a way we can neither predict not determine,. We then have to place what is thrown up, to speak together in this context.

This first iteration of "Re;turn" lasted 20 minutes, and was followed by discussion with the audience (see red arrow button below).

The performance addresses two fundamental dilemmas of collaborative printmaking - especially in the case of screenprinting. The first is the layering of planes of colour to build up images. There are decisions to be made about how to register colours, as the final work is almost always about how colours interact with each other rather than their individual properties. Secondly, with the infinite possibilities of how many layers can make up the work - infinite, perhaps, until a point where the paper fails - there are always decisions to be made about when to stop and when a work is 'finished'. It is in the interval between decision making and execution that both artist and printmaker operate in a state of unknowing, when the only thing propelling them forward is mutual trust in each other's instincts.


Dr Preona Prasad

Exhibitions and Programming Manager,

The Heong Gallery Bye-Fellow, Downing College

re: turn

Below, three sketches for re:turn, made in the studio. They show the range of imagery and scale of the ideas.

Sketch towards re: turn, February 2019

Sketch towards re: turn, February 2019

Sketch towards re: turn, February 2019