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12th - 18th September 2014 Centrespace, VRC Dundee Contemporary Arts

Decision Time - an exhibition with artworks, performances, talks and dialogues exploring decision-making in the context of the Scottish Referendum on Independence. 



Decision Time Decision Time is an exhibition with artworks, performances, talks and dialogues exploring decision-making in the context of the Scottish Referendum on independence. As time has progressed towards the referendum people are engaged and debate abounds. When striving for objective knowledge to evaluate and base our decisions on, we are confronted with subjective reasoning, hopes and fears. Decision Time brings together works that explore, often playfully, individual processes, reflections and conclusions. Just like other members of the public, artists have researched, expressed their preferences, beliefs, feelings, affiliations, confusions and decisions. The exhibition exists in the week before the historic referendum on Scottish independence takes place. The show is not party political, although there are different views expressed in some of the works. Decision Time is a celebration of the process of choosing, the act of deciding and the possible consequences of those choices at this moment in Scotland.

Decision Time was curated by ZoĂŤ Irvine & Pernille Spence in collaboration with 5 Million Questions at the University of Dundee.


Mohammed Ali A New Scottish Enlightenment is a counterfactual speculation where a Yes result in the 1979 Referendum leads to the creation of an independent Scotland and the New Scottish Government. The timeline logs the implementation of the various Acts of Parliament, initiatives and alliances whose aim is to create an infrastructure within which citizens gain personal energy independence. Eventually this leads to the creation of an alternative economic paradigm where a different form of exchange and economy is created. These are based on the generation, distribution and sharing of energy both within the fictional New Scotland and neighbouring states with similar perspectives. The work describes the outcomes of some of the key pieces of legislation on an individual, community or global level. It asks what our legislators could do to create a society not hidebound by the restrictions of previous thinking. Scotland on the 19th of September is unknown to us, just as it was previously on the 2nd of March 1979 before the referendum. The speculation challenges our future policy makers and citizens to become the vanguard in the race to develop sustainable human, economic and environmental ecologies. Mohammed studied Fine Art at Central St Martins, during which time he also trained as a cabinet maker. The conceptual and philosophical concerns of his degree course were complemented by the pragmatic nature of furniture making. Following graduation, he worked in radio and television research and production and continued to design and make furniture. Joining the Masters, Design Interactions programme at the RCA in 2012, he made use of his research skills and wide background knowledge, to look into the relationships we have with energy. What associations do we have with it within our societies and more specifically with economics and politics? Through scenario building and design and using his skills as a maker he translates these ideas and questions into works which attempt to unpick those connections. Mohammed speculates about alternatives to capitalism and not the end of the world.


Jonathan Baxter Open Dialogue – Faith and Reason We attend to an Open Dialogue with open hearts and minds. This is a dialogue not a discussion. The silence between words is as important as the words themselves – it is the silence that we listen through. Participants are invited to speak when they feel called to – whilst remaining mindful that their contributions should be fairly concise. Participants are invited to speak from their own concern – not to respond directly to another participant’s contribution. There may be mutually reinforcing or differentiating dialogue. The aim of an Open Dialogue is to learn from our differences and to grow in understanding. An Open Dialogue does not assume an agreement.

Jonathan Baxter is an artist and ... He works across disciplines – both art and non-art related – using psychoanalytic methodologies and performative practices to variously open up, challenge and propose what is. Jonathan’s work is informed by a prior commitment to social, environmental and economic justice. Image above: Dialogue of Trees, 2011


Anton Beaver THE THING IS immediately suggests that there is a counter argument that is potentially more complex, a point of view that has not been discussed or mentioned, that may alter the debate in some way. The phrase is abstract until associated with the subject in question, which could be deciding whether to vote yes or no in the referendum. It is a big decision, not one that comes round very often, however we make decisions everyday sometimes as equally momentous. The irony is yes is positive where as no is generally negative. Can you think of a decision, that when you said yes, was a disastrous one? Biography or Biogeography Born 1965 Falkirk (place of earliest extant example of dog tooth tartan discovered) Lived 1965 – 1969 Cumbernauld (visited by Mary Queen of Scots who planted a yew tree, at Castlecary, near by that still survives today) 1970 – 1984 Edinburgh (Home of the Scottish Parliament opened in 1999) 1985 – 1997 Liverpool (proclaimed by Allen Ginsberg as “ the centre of consciousness of the human universe) 1997 – 2011 Rathillet, Fife (a small village in Kilmany Parish, NE Fife. 3 miles north of Cupar) 2011 – 2014 Newport on Tay (in 1715 a new pier and inn were built resulting in the nickname of “New Dundee”) Meanwhile still producing artwork.


Alan Brown Two Men Speaking About One Thing
, 2014 Two tin cans are attached to flexible metal supports coming from a small wooden box. Both cans are fitted with a small speaker and from each a separate audio track is played. Audio recordings are from a BBC televised debate on Britain’s future in Europe with Nick Clegg and Nigel Farage (April 2014). The opening statements from both speakers are played  simultaneously through each tin can. The ardent dialogue and polarised views become entangled and incomprehensible. The box is fitted with a sensor that detects the presence of a viewer and fades the volume accordingly – the cans are silent if no one is ‘listening’.

Alan Brown is an Edinburgh-based visual artist working with moving image, sound and technology. He creates installations and device art which explore themes of communication, control, power and agency. In a globalised world, where new technology and social media determine much of how we exchange information and relate with each other, he uses old media such as morse code through his artisan electronica. Alan had his first solo exhibition during August 2013 at Inspace Gallery, Edinburgh, supported by New Media Scotland. This was followed in April 2014, as part of the Edinburgh International Science Festival, with an exhibition at Summerhall and work displayed in the National Museum of Scotland’s Grand Gallery.


Joe Coghill Out of My Hands - this performance is intended to be reflective and representative of the dislocation and divide between those who make decisions and those who are directly affected by them. Choices and decisions, which greatly impact upon the lives of the general public, are often deliberated, debated and finally decided upon within committees locked behind closed doors. Most of the time we are unaware of who is deciding our futures, however the decisions made often greatly resonate within our daily lives. The performance intends to audibly demonstrate this issue within a simple stripped back context.

Joe Coghill is a multimedia artist and musician based in Dundee/Fife. Currently part of the Time Based Art programme at DJCAD with a background in sound/music technology and the study of musical (sub)culture. At present working on a number of research/practical projects ranging from the investigation of Dundee’s re-generation and changing industrial heritage, to the exploration of nostalgia, technological obsolescence and authenticity within contemporary culture via the utilisation of numerous aliases and fictionalised artworks.  Interested in mediated communications, D.I.Y self publishing, and establishing new independent means for the exhibition and distribution of contemporary art that looks to exist out with the status quo. 


Calum Colvin ‘Twa Plack’ 2009 is based on the ‘Twa Plack’ label/stamp produced in 1959 by the Scottish Secretariat (a radical organisation founded in 1926) as part of an unsuccessful campaign to persuade the Postmaster General to issue a commemorative stamp to mark the bicentennial year of Burns’ birth (a stamp was finally issued in 1966). They were frequently placed (illegally) next to the official postage stamp and thus postmarked, but more often than not stuck on lamp-posts, walls and the windows of Glasgow tram cars. A plack was a small copper coin, the sixtieth part of a pound Scots (ie two-thirds of an English penny), and although the coin itself had long since ceased to circulate since the time of Burns, the expression was still current in many popular sayings, and, indeed, it figures in Burns poems to signify a trifling sum1 . My version, fifty years later, hints at financial turmoil and devalued currencies in a time of less clearcut political opposition. Particular relevance for the Referendum lies in Burns’s Bruce inspired call to action –Now’s the day, an now’s the hour2 (although a simple vote will do in this case) and George

1 2

‘Burnsiana’ by James A McKay, Alloway Publishing, Ayr pp99-100.

Scots, wha hae wi’ Wallace bled, Scots, wham Bruce has aften led; Welcome to your gory bed, Or to victory!

‘Scots Wha Hae or, Robert Bruce’s Address to His Troops at Bannockburn’ by Robert Burns.

Now’s the day, and now’s the hour; See the front o’ battle lour; See approach proud Edward’s power— Chains and slavery!


Amelia Crouch ‘You Can Always Change Your Mind’ is a short, looping video work. On screen a grid displays an array of answers, ranging from ‘Strongly Agree’ to ‘Strongly Disagree’. These answers are possible responses to the statement proposed in the work’s title. A cursor arrow moves indecisively between the options and variously selects, then deselects each of the answers. Indecision can be frustrating and is often thought of as a negative trait. On the contrary, the ability to change one’s mind in light of changing circumstances or new information is a virtue. The work could be interpreted in terms of either of these perspectives, or perhaps presents an ambivalence between the two. Amelia Crouch is a visual artist who lives in West Yorkshire. She uses media including print, video, and installation to produce work for both gallery and site-responsive, public realm locations. Most of her work uses words, as either content or inspiration. Currently she is working on a commission with Pavilion, Leeds, and some ACE funded videos about language and perception. Amelia holds a BA Fine Art from the University of Leeds and an MA in Fine Art from Manchester Metropolitan University.


Gair Dunlop Has a CV, therefore he has been born and has exhibited. His birth was in Glasgow. His exhibitions have been in V2 Rotterdam, International Symposium of Electronic Arts, Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, Street Level Gallery, Arts Catalyst London, Kassel Documentary Film Festival, and many more. In 2016 his film “Atom Town: life after technology’ will be shown at the Science Museum, London. The work takes many forms: video works, photographic series, text and signage.. He is thrilled to be working at an educational institution which is becoming a crucible of transformation and excellence.


Zoë Irvine Decision Chimes (A mini melodrama. Sound work 5mins) At 5pm on the days the Scottish Parliament is sitting, the sound of the ‘division bell’ can be heard throughout. It is time for the Members of the Scottish Parliament (MSPs) to make their way hastily to the debating chamber for Decision Time. That is the moment when MSPs cast their votes on the days business. There is a sense of drama about Decision Time. The division bell is swiftly followed by a whoosh of well shod footsteps on Kemnay granite, Caithness flagstone, Scottish oak and Italian marble. Beneath these grand spaces are more humble areas made of breeze block and concrete with large metal radiators, one note xylophones for those passing playfully with a pen, key or poised finger to strike a gamalan clang echoing up a stairwell. This short piece brings the sounds upper and lower levels of the Parliament together in the moment of Decision Time. It will play once every 20mins during the show. Counterpoint (An instrumental oratorio for piano. Video work 1h 27mins) This work transposes the spoken language of the recent Independence Debate between Alistair Darling and Alex Salmond into music. By creating a piano score, stripping away the specific words, we hear instead the energy and rhythms of the performance. While considering performance and virtuosity, the aim is not to depoliticise, but to listen in a different way to these now very familiar arguments. Zoë Irvine is an award winning artist and sound designer living and working in Edinburgh. Her artistic work ranges from carefully crafted individual pieces for radio, installation and performance. Recent work Eloquent Voice (2014) exploring biometric voice analysis to larger scale participatory which include DIAL-A-DIVA, (2005 – 2008) a global 24 hour live phonecast concert and Magnetic Migration Music (1998 – 2010) an international found sound project. Zoë is currently collaborating with composer Pippa Murphy as artists in residence at the Scottish Parliament, their work will be premiered next year. www.zoeirvine.net


Nigel Johnson “Tomes of Destiny” is an installation that references the short soundbites and rhetoric of the opposing camps of the referendum debate, ‘Better Together’ and ‘Yes Scotland’. Utilising random extracts from the Scottish government’s White Paper on independence juxtaposed with contrasting statements and facts about the strengths of retaining a united kingdom, the work presents contrasting points of view to the viewer. Both sides passionately believe the best choice for our future is to remain a strong and proud nation either together or as separate countries. The future will be determined by the outcome of the referendum and what this might hold for Scotland and the UK. These divergent interpretations are presented on two LED, moving message displays representing the ‘yes’ and ‘no’ camps. By pressing either a ‘yes’ or no ‘button’, the viewer is presented with a random extract from the relevant body of information covering areas such as the economy; jobs; the pound; the NHS; defence; welfare; the EU; pensions; energy; education etc. Analysis of the content is not provided, rather the viewer has the opportunity to weigh up the short streams of information and hopefully to critically assess the veracity of what is being presented, perhaps stimulating a decision one way or the other. Nigel Johnson is Chair of Interactive Arts as well as Director of PhD Studies within Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design (DJCAD), University of Dundee. He studied Fine Art as an undergraduate at Liverpool and obtained a postgraduate degree in Experimental Media at the Slade School, University College, London. With a Fine Art background his areas of expertise also encompass programming, softwareand hardware development, as well as the application of contemporary technologies for creative visual practices. Projects have included, for example, the creation of vision-based, gesture and motion recognition software for real-time performance and installation. He has over thirty years experience of developing interdisciplinary visual arts projects, working within the domain of creative visual applications for ‘real-time’ digital artworks and interactive new-media installations.Fundamentally his research and practice engages research questions and concerns that are grounded in the micro-macro nature of the world, whilst attempting to bring clarity, insight and new understanding where art and science boundaries meet and overlap. These areas include the nature and the role of human interaction and processes and their impact upon the development, evolution and outcomes of digital artefacts. He exhibits his work nationally and internationally. Acknowledgements: With special thanks to Ali Napier, Studio Support Specialist, Digital Interaction Design, DJCAD.


Richard Layzell Title: Clear Stripes [straight forward] A performance exploring the broad spectrum of decision-making and the consequences of a clear move. A step in the right direction always involves leaving something behind. A moment of supreme clarity can make all the difference, but did I leave the gas on, the door unlocked, the window open? There’s a list of instructions on the table. If you follow them carefully you’ll find it’s all very possible. Draw the lines as straight as possible covering any surfaces that occur in the same plane. Do not use colour. Move slowly from A to B. Avoid the cutlery. Don’t ask too many questions in case it gets embarrassing. Your destiny is in our hands and you know it makes sense to rely on our considerable experience in the field. Well done. This new work, developed for Decision Time sits within the spectrum of performance and interventionist art practice. It incorporates a live exploration of what it means to embody and simultaneously document words and actions as they happen. “Time is energy” Henri Bergson Richard Layzell a London-based visual artist. His work in performance, video and installation - and with industry and communities - has been recognised internationally. He held the Arts Council’s Video Art Bursary at Brighton University in 1980 and the resulting videotapes Floor, Power and Guide were extensively shown in Europe and N America. His interactive installation Tap Ruffle and Shave, commissioned by Glasgow Museums in 1995, toured to London, Manchester and Newcastle and was seen by 100,000 people. From 1996 he developed a series of innovative residencies in industry, defining the role of the ‘visionaire’, with: AIT Plc, Promise and Unilever. His development of the artist’s role in redefining corporate culture and community has subsequently been applied to a series of artworks and commissions in the public realm in Bristol, Shanghai, Colchester, Canvey Island, etc. He has been working with Tania Koswycz – a fictional collaborator – since 2003 on a series of online dialogues and The Manifestation, a major installation for galleries. He is the author of The Artists Directory, Enhanced Performance and Cream Pages. His performance Key Notes was recently shown at Tate Britain and his award-winning collaboration with choreographer Janice Parker, Private Dancer, was shown as part of the Cultural Olympiad in London in 2012. Their most recent collaboration Glory was shown at the Tramway in Glasgow in 2014.


James s Lee ‘The Conservative Party 2010 Manifesto, Austerity Cookbook, Wood, Self-drying Clay’ (2014) Materials as per Title I resist a role for art that refuses to engage with the seriousness of the times we inhabit – whereby political decisions can make or break people’s life’s in seemingly excessive ways; I resist the role of the artist as a paradigm of the ‘creative entrepreneur’- an underpaid means to economic ‘growth’ that suits dominant social class relations. I resist normative economic and social thinking that is subsumed under the logic of capitalism; I resist Mumford & Sons because someone somewhere has to defend the values and cultural heritage of Western civilisation and I took this agency upon myself. I resist political realities that seem ingrained to the point of being ‘common sense’- when they are long past the point where they make any sense. I resist this lack of imagination: all paths have not yet been explored! * I resist the desperation & strain of our time, in our current location by realising that this very desperation & strain is the very point at which the licence to seek out and experiment with political, economic & social solutions to problems should be at it’s most potent. I propose to develop and utilise this licence in my art practice. * !!!

James s Lee ** B. 1986, Dundee, Scotland, U.K. Lives & works in Dundee, Scotland, U.K as a spectral apparition. Undistinguished public servant & artist James S Lee is also most notably a dodgy philosopher, terrible dancer & worse singer. He makes ends meet by working in a cinema, excelling as a suave gallery assistant and triumphing as the world’s best removal man. Since 2012, James Lee has been at the steering wheel of Dundee’ artist led space, GENERATOR Projects. All the terrible shows that will inevitably occur from now until January 2015 will be partly his fault. This collection of (non) skills combine to create a poly mathematical super-equation that makes a laughing stock of Cantor’s axiomatic set theory in every way ( much to the consternation of ‘science’) ** James Lee killed himself off in the soap opera of his life for an art project in 2013, in an event that was ill documented and ill attended. He lives as a spectral presence, haunted by the future, as he haunts the present. He lives with just enough sentience to put together his own bio for an occasional exhibition.


Donna Leishman + DJ Nord (aka Steve Gibson) Borderline (2012-13) By Donna Leishman. Sound by DJ Nord (aka Steve Gibson) Borderline is a text-video-sound artwork and a performative piece concerned with time-based and improvisational action, in which two participants interact together within an audio-visual environment to gain a sense of the project’s latent narrative content. The narrative is based on borderline personality disorder (visualizing the problems of disassociation and hysteria through image, movement and narrative structure). Borderline re-deploys VJ software technologies to develop a dual interaction experience that uses hand-based gesture (via two graphic tablets and their pens) instead of the established hyperlink model. This helps to foster a ‘computer system as instrument’ analogy in which the participants’ can ‘improvise’ ‘play’ ‘perform’ sets of narrative content. The textual elements can be randomly accessed at any moment and any part of the piece can be triggered, sped up, rewound or forwarded by using the pen and tablet interface. Donna Leishman is a media artist, designer, writer and researcher and is based in Scotland. Since 1999 her website 6amhoover.com has been the platform to experience her interactive projects. Her artworks have been presented in museums, galleries, conferences and festivals around the world including: UkinNY festival (NYC), Resistor Gallery (Toronto), Centre for Contemporary Art (Glasgow), TechnoPoetry Festival (Georgia Tech) DeCordova Museum (Boston) OFFF (Barcelona). Digital Arts & Culture conference (Melbourne), M.I.T (Boston), The Six Cities Festival (Glasgow) Designersblock


– The Scottish Show (Milan/London) ELO Visionary Landscapes (Vancouver USA), The Arnolfini (Bristol, UK). In 2004 she joined Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design in Dundee, where currently she is the Programme Leader for Communication Design. Her critical writings cover the social reception of digital media. Themes in recent research include issues around online ethics, identity formation and interrogating the aesthetic consequences of difficult interactions. Steve Gibson is an interactive media artist, interface designer, electronic musician and media curator. He completed his Ph.D. at SUNY Buffalo, where he studied music composition with Louis Andriessen. He currently serves as Reader in Innovative Digital Media at Northumbria University, Newcastle, UK. He was curator for the Media Art event Interactive Futures from 2002-07. Simultaneously deeply involved with technology and deeply suspicious of its effects, Gibson’s work celebrates both the liberation and paranoia of techno-fetishism. Influenced by a diverse body of art and popular movements his practice-based work fuses immersive art, audio-visual performance and DIY design. He works in a range of media, from live electronic music to game art to virtual reality installation. Steve Gibson’s works have been exhibited in such venues as: Ars Electronica; the Whitney Museum of American Art; Banff Centre for the Arts; Digital Art Weeks; the European Media Arts Festival; ISEA; Cabaret Voltaire, Zurich; the San Francisco Art Institute; 4 & 6CyberConf. His work has been published internationally by Leonardo Electronic Almanac, St. Martin’s Press, The MIT Press, New World Perspectives, Turnaround Productions, Future Publications, Urra Apogeo, and Passagen Verlag.


Mary Modeen Decision Trees and Truth Tables ‘Decision trees’ and ‘truth tables’ are two devices most often used by computing scientists, mathematicians and philosophical logicians. As models for understanding, these devices assume rationality as a basis for making decisions. These are then used to chart the evidential process for making decisions. But humans are not always rational; indeed, lateral thinking and impulsive behaviour are two distinctively human characteristics. Associative thinking and the laughably eccentric are counterfoils to rationality. This human aspect that doesn’t always make sense is fascinating, especially in the ways that one might find representation for this a-logical process. In this work, structures for rationality are framed within moments of choice. Mary Modeen is an artist and interdisciplinary academic who makes art and writes. She founded and leads the Master of Fine Art (MFA) in Art and Humanities at DJCAD, University of Dundee, in a course that combines academic study with creative practice. She also supervises PhD candidates in interdisciplinary practice-led studies. Modeen’s research has several threads: perception as a cognitive and interpretive process, and place-based research, which tends to connect cultural values, history and embodied experience. As such, this work usually combines creative art with printmaking practice at its core, and writing. She co-convenes three research groups, Mapping Spectral Traces and Land2, and PLaCE International (UK), which is part of an international research consortium. A solo show of her artwork, entitled The Absolutely Other, and comprised of prints and artists books, was exhibited at the Edinburgh Print Workshop in Jan-Mar 2014.


Rebecca Milling Reflective Construction VI The series, Reflective Construction, captures the reflection of Milling’s figure in the sculptures which she has blown from glass. The final sculptures reflect and distort light from every surface and the photographs concentrate on the allure of the reflection. “I am fascinated by the instant of smashing the glass and motivated to visually capture the drama of an explosion with shards of the reflected figure flying through the air in joyful destruction. We watch children build a tower of bricks with great method and precision followed by the moment of glee and delight when it is high enough to bash down and lies strewn across the floor.” Milling has participated in various exhibitions, performances and installations. She has received numerous awards, most recently, the Royal Scottish Academy Residency at North Lands Glass, Caithness and Stills, Edinburgh. Milling was born in London and later grew up in South Wales, she completed her BA and MA Fine Art degrees at Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art, University of Dundee. She now lives and works in Edinburgh. www.rebeccamilling.com


Tracy Mackenna & Edwin Janssen Based on the well-known poster by John Lennon and Yoko Ono for their peace campaign of the early seventies ‘WAR IS OVER! if you want it, Love and Peace from John & Yoko’, the Leap of Faith badge continues our ongoing series, The John & Yoko Drawings. Addressing a range of social, political and cultural issues these become public through various forms such as wall drawings, posters and badges. The first drawing was made shortly after taking part in the exhibition ‘Peace’ at Migros Museum für Gegenwartskunst Zurich, Switzerland, 1999-2000. Tracy Mackenna & Edwin Janssen have collaborated since 1997 after meeting as participants in Manifesta, the European Biennial of Contemporary Art. The multidisciplinary collaborative practice that Tracy and Edwin share is a creative and discursive site central to which are exhibition projects that integrate research, production, presentation, exchange and education. Research focuses on issues of life and death, cultural identity, notions of place, and visual publishing. Major exhibition projects have been held at e.g. Nederlands Fotomuseum, Rotterdam; Scottish National Portrait Gallery, Edinburgh; P3 art and environment, Tokyo; CCA Centre for Contemporary Art, Glasgow. Recent publications include ‘WAR AS EVER!’, ‘Truth, Error, Opinion’, ‘Shotgun Wedding’ and ‘A Perfect Image of Ourselves’. Work is held in public and private collections including Migros Museum für Gegenwartskunst, Zürich; Twynstra Gudde, the Netherlands; Child Protection Agency, the Netherlands; Arts Council of England; The Contemporary Art Society; Scottish Arts Council; Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art. http://www.mackenna-and-janssen.net


Lindsay Perth ‘One Hundred Blinks’ is a collection of portraits. One hundred faces, aged 0 to 100, are shown in order of age, each face changing to the next during a blink. Filmed in close up with eyes in sharp focus each portrait is an individual with character, wisdom and vulnerability. As a collection of faces, ‘One Hundred Blinks’ presents a reflective and connecting narrative that is essentially the human experience. The film progresses through the ages as each face changes, ending with the blink of the 100 year old which reveals the face of the new born baby once more. Filmed in slow motion at 200 frames per second Perth attempts to slow down time and give us opportunity to gaze and celebrate each age and face with their uniqueness and humanity. The film was created during Perth’s visual arts residency at NHS Forth Valley Hospitals in 2013. The film, which runs at 108 minutes and looped, was projected as a large-scale outdoor projection on Forth Valley Royal Hospital. www.onehundredblinks.org Lindsay Perth is an Edinburgh-based artist. Canadian born, Perth has lived in Scotland since 1986. She has exhibited and curated nationally and internationally and worked with arts organisations across Scotland for 16 years as a collaborating artist. Perth is preoccupied with ideas of limbo and narrative ambiguity. Moving from Canada to Scotland as a young teen undoubtedly created a sense of a duality. This sense of suspension and of having two life narratives has been a source of inspiration for her work. It is the in-between stage that fascinates her - when what was, is no longer, and what will be, is not yet. Although predominantly lens-based Perth considers herself an interdisciplinary artist. Between 2011-13 was Visual Artist in Residence at NHS Forth Valley Hospitals. The publication ‘A Sense of Someplace’ and the feature length film ‘One Hundred Blinks’ are two works produced during her residency. www.lippi.org www.asenseofsomeplace.org


Ashley Russell I am a Glasgow based artist born in Melbourne, Australia where I studied fine Art. I have exhibited my work in Melbourne, Berlin and throughout Scotland. Currently I am creating paintings for an installation with the working title ‘Lost in Translation’ for my next solo exhibition, as well as exhibiting work as part of Black Cube Collectives Annual show in Edinburgh. My work deals with the technological means of information processing, interpretation, relationships between machinery and it’s end user and distinctions between our experience of nature and artifice. I question the nature of our relationship with technological development and whether we are entities of it as defined through evolution. Having created our own increasing redundancy in many areas of processing and production, questions emerge of our ongoing place and future within the world of our creation based on rapid development of technology. I develop these ideas and processes through referencing printing keys, codes, compositional qualities and the design of devices that deliver content. Aiming to recompose and create associations, propositional explorations and potential relationships derived from this foreign language and representation for the purpose of discovery, uncovering and understanding more about these processes and potential outcomes. Painting allows me to pursue possibilities through the process of making, utilising different techniques, material qualities and cultural associations, ranging from nature based to industrially produced. These characteristics are maximised through contrast in texture and multi-layering, with colour choice determined by it’s conceptual relevance to industrialised manufacturing and elemental colours used in processing and display. The process of construction is important in the outcome of my work because it consolidates the relationship between the physical object and my concept of the work. http://www.artslant.com/global/artists/show/230701-ashley-russell


Carolyn Scott & Andy Sim The Bus Party 2014 Inspired by a similar event in Germany in the 1960s led by the novelist Gunter Grass, artists, writers, poets and musicians shared a mini-bus on a 750-mile tour on the run-up to the 1997 Devolution Referendum in Scotland. Reviving this idea for the impending Independence Referendum, with the object to reach outlaying communities, the artists on board the 2014 Bus Party spent a week in May travelling around Scotland discussing the question (regardless of how one may vote) of “What kind of future Scotland do we want?” While other artists on board performed and engaged in dialogue with the audiences, as invited artists on this pre-referendum ‘Listening Lugs’ tour from Orkney to Stirling, video artist Andy Sim and I documented the trip, recording the sixteen events. On route we filmed landscape and photographed people and places we visited, amassing a comprehensive collection of photographic images and 16 hours of film. The latter has been edited to make a thirty-five minute short film to be shown at Decision Time. Visual artist Carolyn Scott and video artist Andy Sim have collaborated on several film/installations since meeting as post-graduate students at Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design, Dundee University, in 2010. The Bus Party 2014 is their latest work. http://www.carolynscottimages.com http://www.andysim.com


Carol Sinclair The Power of a Good Question Have you ever been asked such a good question that it stops you in your tracks? It made you think about why you are doing something and what you want to achieve in doing it. Often we are so busy simply doing that we don’t stop to think about why, and that good question is the punctuation in our activity that invites us to stop and consider our choice. Carol Sinclair is a ceramic artist who explores the theme of connection in her creative work. She is also a business adviser, trainer and coach for creative practitioners and uses questions to help others to make connections which aid their decision making. In Decision Time, Carol will offer the undecided a space to think and be questioned. She will not provide any answers, but simply ask questions. In this project Carol will bring both her creative and coaching practices together to explore what those good questions might be. If you have a decision to make and are unsure, come and be questioned.


Liz Skulina Liz Skulina’s research and work is based on the discovery and realisation of our sense of collective identities and shared experiences. As well as digital media, Liz often uses familiar objects, materials and techniques located within society, culture and the environment in order to express her ideas, the finished form and media of the works, being dictated by the research. In this exhibition, in response to the theme of the idea of decision making, Liz has recreated an installation Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose (The more things change, the more they stay the same. J-B Karr, Les Guêpes, January 1849) made up of original newspapers from the 1850s to 1950s. Two scary choices: 1. Are you scared of a decision to change, or 2. Are you scared of a decision not to change. Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose shows that even though our lifestyles and lives may change, many of the concerns, articles, letters, and adverts in the old newspapers, are exactly the same as those we have today. Liz is also showing her work Sky in a bucket, (version 1 and 2). Usually shown as a single piece, I realised that the two versions together illustrated the idea of a false dichotomy in a decision making process. Each choice has its pros and cons, its sunny skies and fluffy clouds, and its lowering threat of rain. These promises and forebodings are framed in a shiny brand new bucket and a rusty traditional old bucket. Both hold water. Liz Skulina is an artist, curator, and project co-ordinator who lives and works in Cupar, Fife. She graduated from Duncan of Jordanstone with a Masters in Fine Art and is an Associate of the Royal Society of British Sculptors. She worked in Fine Art Research for a number of years and with Hospitalfield House on a three year European Partnership Community Arts project involving Art Centres in Budapest, Hungary, and Berlin and Plüschow in Germany.


Pernille Spence I Look Up … I Look Down Often the surroundings of our ‘everyday’, the too familiar, can easily begin to cloud judgement. Taking a step back and finding space to gain a clear perspective can help. Find a peaceful place, climb a mountain, or fly through the sky.

Pernille Spence is an artist based in Scotland. She has a background in sculpture and media art and has been creating installations, performances and moving image works since the mid 1990s, exhibiting internationally. Her work has been shown at the European Performance Art Festival, Warsaw, the National Review of Live Art, Glasgow, the EdithRuss-Haus for Media Art, Germany and the Dean Gallery, Edinburgh. Pernille’s work often explores a visual dialogue between the human body, movement and space and the body’s physical/psychological limits and constraints with in these parameters. Pernille currently lectures part-time in the Art + Media department at Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art & Design.

‘I Look Up ... I Look Down’ by Pernille Spence | Performer - Lynne Cocker | Camera - Bruno Brokken | Sound - John Scott | Supported by Skydive St Andrews


Iain Sturrock My Daughter’s Oil Rig - I believe the cardinal materials of our era are oil and plastics – ironically My Daughter’s Oil Rig is made from a relatively rare model kit which was discontinued due to its unpopularity with model makers, partially because the kit’s mouldings were deemed to look, of all things, too plastic. The kit also undersold because of its cumbersome utilitarianism - an oil rig’s design and purpose can’t be romanticised in the same manner that a model of a Spitfire can. In the overwhelmingly male world of model making and railway layouts, it’s surprisingly difficult finding models that reflect the prosaic aesthetics of our industrialised society, for example railway accessories often hark back to a form of 1950’s pastoralism which doesn’t represent our contemporary architectural no-scapes of oil refineries, factories and brown belt industrial estates. My Daughter’s Oil Rig is of course a satire on the colossal inanity of gender stereotyping from childhood toys to adult career choices – but its collision of Moomins and Mammom also hides a querulous tenderness. I do not own this work; my three-year-old daughter unwittingly owns it, and it will be held in trust on her behalf until her eighteenth birthday. Legacies are a form of projection – My Daughter’s Oil Rig consciously combines personal and political projections: it is a sentimental work, I’ve perversely created a tender oil rig; but it’s also a work concurrently mired in the blunt-force realities of geo-economic ownership and capital – whose oil is it anyway? Iain Sturrock was raised in the now defunct coal-mining belt of Southern Fife and graduated from Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art & Design with a Degree in Fine Art. His personal practice encompasses drawing, painting, photography and installations and is based from the Dundee WASPS studios at Meadow Mill. He is also a Lecturer in Art & Media at DJCAD and currently lives with his oil rig owning daughter in Fife. He occasionally collaborates with the artist Delia Baillie under the nom de plume The Hospital For Dazed Art. He will be voting yes on the 18th of September and has known this for a very long time.


Edward Summerton Come on, it’s time to choose. You can’t have both altered newspaper poster 67cm x 47 cm Drink or drugs shame of Scotland’s top artist? Hmm, tricky one. Think it’s going to be the drink. Close though! Edward Summerton has exhibited in solo and group exhibitions throughout the UK, Europe, North America, Australia and South Korea. He has received critical acclaim for his collaborative works that explore alternative formats for the dissemination of his practice. These have included - Delayed by Storm, Bird of the Devil, Diary of an Egg Collector and Perennial Drift. As a curator he has produced innovative exhibitions and projects that have included Dr.Skin, Blind Sight, Digital VD, Prints of Darkness and Between the Late and Early. Summerton has work in public collections in the UK and the USA, including the BBC and The Museum of Modern Art, New York. He is a senior lecturer at DJCAD, Dundee.


Alana Tyson Best Laid Plans is a video performance in which Tyson attempts to build a house of cards as her father showed her, however, the cards are made of porcelain and break when they fall. Made after a serious family illness, this piece represents Tyson’s interpretation of the instability of the plans we make in our own lives. The video is 30 minutes long, Tyson had no idea how long the performance would take when she began, but set a rule of not allowing herself to stop until all of the cards had been broken of used. Alana Tyson was born in Calgary, Canada. She graduated from the Alberta College of Art and Design in 2006, with a BFA (Hons) degree in Painting. She moved to the UK in 2007 and currently lives in North Wales. Alana Tyson’s work attempts to make sense of the world she inhabits. Identifying herself as an outsider, not just because she is an immigrant to the UK, Tyson keenly feels the friction of everyday life and the contradictions and hypocrisy of society. Dismayed by such platitudes as “that is how it has always been,” her uncertain questioning takes the form of performance, sculpture and installation utilising found, altered and constructed elements. A commonality of her materials is their link to domesticity, as she makes use of everyday items such as suit lining or even sugar. Repetition and mark making are key aesthetic elements in Tyson’s work. The build up of a simple mark, movement or idea can create a complex work that calls for reassessment. Tyson’s questioning does not provide answers but she is striving to elicit reactions in the viewer, maybe to comfort but also to evoke laughter or even unnerve. She was the recipient of the Ignac and Karla Herskovic Memorial Scholarship (2006), and has received support from the Alberta Foundation for the Arts (2006), The Arts Council of Wales (2013, 2014) and a-n Magazine (2013). www.alanatyson.com


Kim Walker How Do You Know Anything Is Happening? - A single screen video piece that playfully engages with decision making through a familiar game structure. Participants are given instructions to attempt to telepathically communicate with an individual of their choice. Decisions regarding whom they choose to communicate with, whether their attempts are successful and their own thoughts on the task and outcome are absent, highlighting whether anything ‘real’ has actually happened at all or whether what they experienced is purely fantastical. Walker has naturally moved towards exploring pathos surrounding the concepts of seriousness, the mundane, nonsense, failure, success and humour. This is through a continued focus on the human condition and behaviours of gaming, playfulness, amusement and isolation. She creates strategies and settings in which the mundane and the playful, ordinary gesture can suddenly invoke existential and poetic meanings. Walker’s engagement with the world around us comes from an observatory position - this gaze looks towards human interactions, the natural word and the spaces in between these two sites. Kim Walker is a Scottish artist working with sound, video, installation and new media. She gained her MFA in Studio from SAIC (School of the Art Institute of Chicago) and her BA (Hons) Time Based Art from DJCAD (Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design). Kim also holds a PgDip in Library and Information Studies from the University of Strathclyde. Walker has exhibited widely through artist-led spaces, larger galleries, video screening fesitvals and radio broadcasts. Examples include Southhill Park (Bracknell, UK), Mess Hall (Chicago IL), Heaven (Chicago, IL), Area 405 (Baltimore, MA), Little Berlin (Philadelphia, PA), Cooper Gallery, DJCAD (Dundee, UK), Limousine Bull Artists’ Collective (Aberdeen, UK).


Mark Wallace Ditch The Shitstem…and run like f**k Every time I hear the word independence, I instantly hear the words “were independent” the chorus of Derrick Morgan’s 1962 Independence Victory Ska classic “Forward March”, a tune from my youth. Jamaica too faced the choice of independence from colonial rule; in 1962, they voted for Independence. I am also seeing the current Westminster establishment as having a negative effect on Scotland, reminding me of Peter Tosh’s word for the System = The Shitstem. The dirty tricks of the No campaign and media outlets have made an unequal playing field in the run up to these elections. “As it was designed by jah was my creator who sent me here to help alleviate the shitstem, to tame the fate of corruption which my people have been inoculated with, it is only my duty to teach those who will learn.” Peter Tosh There is a mass of “Politrickal” propaganda and fear coming from the establishment who have joined forces against the yes vote to thwart Scotland’s leap of hope. Unexpectently a new generation of Scots and grass roots n culture movements are seeing through the “tricknology” as Peter Tosh puts it, they want real change, not the same “Shitstem” or Shitus Quo. Forward March! Mark Wallace is an artist/producer/DJ, and a Lecturer currently working in the School of Fine Art, Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art& Design, University of Dundee. His work mainly deals with aspects of the human experience: these include identity, memory, philosophy, religion, behaviour and language. Looking at these concepts, he finds an infinite source of ideas to subvert, deconstruct and reassemble with his own personal slant. He is also interested in technology, in the inter-relationships of sound and image, through exploring the media of sound art, film and music production.


Arthur Watson

THE UNITED COLOURS OF SCOTLAND


Kathy Watts

Chancer is a small installation, a fictitious gambling game which consists of two card tables; one red one green and forty four pieces, each a four sided item - a combination of a dice and four depictions of a face showing different emotions. The viewer is invited to work out or invent the game… Does anger fare better than humour? Is placid contemplation more useful than dynamic activism? Of what importance are the numbers on the die and can the rules of the game change with the ‘stop’ and ‘go’ of the red and green characters? How many players, who is the winner and what is the prize? These are all questions for the onlooker to decide. This work is a playful look at the complex process of decision making, particularly in the context of the forthcoming referendum, which is in so many ways a gamble. Kathy Watts is an artist and designer based in Fife, Scotland,U.K. She studied Fine Art at Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design, Dundee University where she obtained a B.A and M.F.A. Kathy has travelled extensively throughout her long involvement in the fashion jewellery industry.This has been a major influence on her practice which explores process, production and consumption through sculpture and site specific installation. www.kathywatts.co.uk


Jack Webb Fleshnote - performed by Jack Webb and Madira Gregurek, Fleshnote is an extraordinary, bold and uncompromising dance performance, described by Mary Brennan in the Herald as ‘dauntingly impressive’. In Fleshnote, the minuscule happenings in the body and mind are magnified to euphoric levels whilst the performers transform between and embrace the human and animalistic structures and behaviours embedded in humanity, evolution and nature. The work is strongly routed in dance, improvisation and crosses over in to performance. It is concerned with the exploration of transformation and deconstruction of the body, states of consciousness, heightened emotional states and distortion of the body, objects, costume and surroundings. It is influenced by and attempts to connect to the goings on in nature, society, human and animal behaviour and the similarities between the two as well as zooming in on and confronting inner emotional and mental landscapes of both the performer and the audience. Fleshnote is about survival and making the right choices and sacrifices for existence, collaboration, harmony, birth and rebirth. Jack is a leading Scottish dancer and choreographer who has worked internationally with many with companies and choreographers including Damien Jalet and fashion designer Hussein Chalayan (Sadler’s Wells) Simon Vincenzi, Company Chordelia Dance Theatre/Scottish Opera, Croiglan Integrated Dance (work by Adam Benjamin), David Hughes Dance Scotland (work by Kylie Walters and Tanja Liedtke) Alan Greig Dance Theatre, Via Negativa (Slovenia) Grange Park Opera, Jose Vidal Company, Arthur Pita, Ben Wright, Charles Linehan, Angus Balbernie, Ian Spink, the Curve Foundation Dance Company, (works by Hofesh Scechter, Henri Oguike, Jonathan Watkins and Morgan Runacre Temple), Dance Theatre Luxembourg and Matthew Hawkins amongst others. Since 2006 he has created a vast body of work which has been presented at various major festivals and platforms including Tramway, Glasgow, Dock 11, Berlin, Nottdance, Nottingham, New Territories International Festival of Live Art, Ada Studio, Berlin, Hamburger Sprechwerk, Hamburg, Edinburgh Fringe Festival at Dance, Dance Live, Aberdeen, March Moves, Aberdeen, the Place, London, Embrace Arts, Leciester, the Traverse, Edinburgh, the Arches, Glasgow, DanceCity, Newcastle amongst many others as well as commissions from Wilton’s Music Hall, London, Oval House, London, Dance 4 Centre for Advanced Training, Teesside University, Middlesbrough, the Scottish School of Contemporary Dance and Third Row Dance Company at Roehapton University, London.


Lada Wilson word[s] matter[s] - Lada Wilson’s artwork word[s] matter[s] is a durational piece that will take shape during the two days of the Decision:Time festival. The artwork is sculptural — its final form will be determined by the number of conversations between the artist and the public. Lada will ask people to help her select words from four different languages (English, Spanish, Dutch and Croatian) and help her choose the order of the selected words which will then be used immediately to create an ephemeral outdoor sculpture The artist’s conversations will be recorded and will be used as elements in a short performance in the Centrespace gallery. For this project I will be using my work 34words as point of departure for a playful exploration of decision making in a performative and socially engaged way. 34words artwork is made from thirty four A4 sheets of paper, each sheet of paper has one word printed on it. The array of the words is in four different languages – English, Spanish, Dutch and Croatian. In the past the form of this artwork was based on the juxtaposition of sheets of paper with thirty four stones which act as paper weight, keeping each sheet of paper in place where I have decided to put it. The word’s sequence was determined by my decisions. In art and life I find the aspect of decision making as important and challenging and it plays an important role in the further unfolding of my artwork. I see 34words as a sculptural piece but for Decision Time I would like to add an interactive element to it I would like to invite audience to, through conversation, help me decide on the sequence of the words… Work can be explored within a gallery setting or off-site/outdoor public space. I will be recording the conversations held over two days and the culmination of the project will be performative reading and live installation of the work.


http://decisiontimescotland.blogspot.co.uk

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Decision time booklet  

Information booklet from the Decision Time exhibition at Centre Space in the Visual Research Centre at Dundee Contemporary Art that took pla...

Decision time booklet  

Information booklet from the Decision Time exhibition at Centre Space in the Visual Research Centre at Dundee Contemporary Art that took pla...

Profile for nilspence
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