Monday, 31 January 2011

Letters From BeeJie While In Berlin, Germany

I recently moved house which happens annually and whilst rummaging through boxes and family albums I discovered a purple folder which contents held a letter from my Grandmother to her Mother. She wrote these at the age of 18 whilst in Berlin only a few years after the Second World War. She was a Christian girl from a well to do family from North Carolina. It exposes her experiences whilst in a new country, the people she met, how she got there and what events took place whilst there. It's also an interesting insight into someone I never met as she passed away when my Mother was young. It's also interesting that I'm going to Berlin in March and there will be only a few years difference between us when we visited this part of Germany but at vastly different points within Berlin's history as a city. I feel this could turn into a project at some point.

There was also in depth research into The Davis' family and where their ancestors can be traced back to. It also had document titled 'Childhood memories of Jess and Lula Davis' which could be of interest for a possible future project.

Cana Film

This is a short film I've been working on over the last couple of weeks. I filmed it over the summer whilst in America. I'm currently doing alternate versions but this is how it stands at the moment.

Live Cana from Matt Weir on Vimeo.

Live Cana

Live Cana Projection

This was filmed in the John Foster Lecture room, I always intended on this video being projected to give it the atmosphere I feel it has. I wanted it to be an all encompassing feeling with the sound and visuals, this can only be left whilst watching the projection live but I feel that this came through and is something I want to exploit further.

Sunday, 30 January 2011


This piece by Nam June Paik hold's two points of interest for me. First its meditative, electric, trance and ambient feel absorbed me whilst simultaneously grabbing my attention and relaxing me. I first stood alone on the out skirts of the room watching it's colours and shapes I felt that this experience was one that left you feeling cold. It wasn't until I went back for a second time did I realise that it was more of an interactive piece where I could stand or lay under it and be absorbed within it. The mixture of nature and technology is interesting and it's something that reminded me of Olafur Eliasson's Weather Project. They share the same electric nature and hypnotic feel and with both I was able to lay there and have them wash over me for extended periods. The second aspect that I found interesting on reflection was it's links to maths and its geometrical shapes and how pure and clean that can be.

Tuesday, 25 January 2011


It's now post-Biennial times and voids need to be filled, The Bluecoats empty spaces are flooded by the current exhibition 'Underwater'. As soon as I entered the main space I was awash with the feeling of being underwhelmed and drowned in disappointment. I was first met with Seunghyun Woo's sculptures of imaginary aquatic flora and fauna which occupied far too much of the gallery's main space as it seemed it was of a GCSE Art standard. This piece's reflection was an annoyance also, as I've been a fan of Bill Violas video work for a number of years but due to its nature and the set up, all I saw was Woo's sunken failure. Bill Violas work 'Becoming Light' screamed out for an isolated room in which you could fully submerse yourself in his underwater dance such as the room Dorothy Cross' video 'Jellyfish Lake' occupied, yet instead it's placed amongst limp sculptures and distracting sounds. I feel that the curator of this particular show should be dealt the fault, as he or she seems to have chosen and placed artists and art works in a rather uninspired way.

Not all of the works left me feeling adrift as Daniel Gustav Cramer's photographs grabbed me hook, line and sinker, as they were a subtle landscape of the deep. These stood out in a sea of mediocrity as it blurred the lines of being underwater. They also shone light on the dark unseen cracks of the sea giving them a dramatic and other worldly landscape feel.

Monday, 17 January 2011


I went to see the Altermodern exhibition during my foundation year, two years ago, with NEW College. It's where I discovered Gustav Metzgers 'Liquid Crystal Environments', but it certainly isn't where I discovered Altermoderism. I remember having vague conversations with my tutors at the time about the overall concept created by Bourriaud, but there was never a point where I found myself thinking about this potential new era of modern art. I didn't have enough background knowledge of Art's history to put it into context, that's only came recently for me. There are aspects of this new 'ism' that I've found I can relate to my most recent work with 'The Charles Gershkovich Project'. These area's have been running themes throughout my work of recent years and they are themes I feel I will continue to explore. Themes such as Docu-Fiction, Heterochronia, Boarders, Archive and Travel. Energy is another one of the themes Burriaud has touched upon that he feels "Modern Artists" are dealing with. I believe there are a lot of Artists dealing with these same issues and tackling Art in these ways and I think I've naturally stepped into these issues. Heterochronia is his most interesting idea and is something I tackled in my last essay. I believe it's his boldest but most accurate statement on today's Art and culture. "The last continent to be discovered is time" is something I feel is a incredibly insightful, powerful and is something that will only develop in the coming years.

No Colour.

Colour has dominated my fascinations for a very long time now but I've found myself recently being drawn to the opposite side of the spectrum, with no colour. I'm unsure where this gravitation has come from, weather it's been from recent album covers that I have been influenced by or if it's the natural progression from colour's dominance on my eye. I may be able to trace my recent allure to black and white photograph's back to a picture that I've had around me my entire life. I found a Walker Evans that my Mother had bought years ago, just lying around in the attic. I asked If I could take it to Liverpool with me as I had a bare wall and it's been in the family for so long going unappreciated. My attraction to the mundane and the pedestrian may have derived from this early exposer to Evans work. My Walker Evans has two gentlemen holding watermelons which is the only difference to the one shown below. I've also been looking at the work of more mundane photographers with their choice and use of the black and white. I recently found William Eggleston's pre-colour work and that's very interesting to see his early development. I also have recently bought Bill Owens Suburbia which was documented entirely in black and white. So I've attributed these recent exposers to my growing fondness to the grey scale and I want to develop on this by producing a series of black and whites such as the ones shown above.