the Fort (i)

Found objects, the specifics of location, connectivity, chance and disjunction were some of the concerns / topics that orbited the this work. On a research trip to Estonia some loose video tape (see image) was discovered at the Fort in Rakvere. This was an intriguing find but nonetheless nothing out of the ordinary and was more or less forgotten about on returning to Scotland. Some months later, in Leith, outside ‘The Fort’ (a former fortified [dwelling] now domestic housing block of some notoriety, its enclave nature unerringly palpable as well as being a fair example of cramped damp 60’s type housing ), another piece of video tape was found entangled in a railing. Previous years work had skirted with making some relatively contrived materials connections between Scotland and Estonia that were at best unresolved.

The group was subsequently invited back to Estonia for another project. It seemed obvious that chance should be investigated and any potential realised. Some reverse archaeology and lo-fi technology helped us arrive at the straight-played decayed state aesthetics. For The Fort, these findings were presented to the audience in a darkened basement theatre. The two sets of footage were projected opposite each other and the 2 separate sound tracks blasted inwards to a central arrangement of objects, the outer structure aping a fortified position. The stage was literally set for something to happen, volume up, hissing humming sound, scratched and scored footage barely recognisable and floating just above the ground the effect was quite a charged experience. Competition between the two screens disappeared and they seemed to relate despite their origins and different stories. Within the four walls of The Fort, there was a serious studio-sci attempt to ‘affect a change’ in the original tape which was part of the central set up. In a broken circuit an electro magnet, a copper halftone printing block of a random filmstill (The Snow Treckers, 1957), a 1.5v light bulb were connected. The installed work also included a text on a 1996 article about the ‘Kevin Bacon game’ as well as illuminated large-scale stills of the tape at its respective source locations. No affected change was observed on the original source tape or the central set-up during the period the piece was on show.

go to the Fort (ii)

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