Altered States at PLANT, explored the boundaries at which human identities and cultures are developed.
MINA HABIBOLLAH ZADEH
Based on an educational project for children (or adults) to familiarize children with social and political facts in an intelligible language. The main objectives of the project can be traced to the destructive effects of colonialism and its ongoing problems in the Middle East, which is included in a conceptual framework within this puzzle.
Examining the half-life lived between two states of being. A constant purgatory of conveyor belt medicine and days spent at war with yourself. It alludes to Mike’s struggles with disability and the on-going ever-evolving issues it raises.
Both ‘Strangeways’ and ‘Prime Time’ present drawing data collected during multi-circumnavigations of two borderscapes (a prison and a shipping container yard). Oliver East created this enactive cognition of this site-responsive process to provide the opportunity to engage and respond to place and drawing as thinking. The hope of this data collection by perpetual movement through matter-flux is to create knowledge of place through kinetic empathy with the agents on the other side of these borders.
‘Lost’ deals with Omid Asadi’s tangled emotions of self-alienation, loss and frustration as a result of immigration, conflict and childhood memories. Growing up in Iran, Omid’s practice is influenced by the revolution of 1979, the Iran-Iraq war, the mass executions of the 1980’s and the immigration crisis. These themes manifest themselves in the rough materials of his works. These include the repetitive use of chestnut coloured rusted metals.
Lewis Pritchard's ‘We look after our own’ maps the nuanced experience of passive neglected urban environments, drawing upon apparent unpropitious spaces of post-war architecture and decaying former utopias - ‘to reveal their blurred or lost social ideals.’ Lewis' aims to convey a sense of enclosure, entrapment, and desperation associated with contemporary society - something he identifies as being produced by, and reflected in, capitalist modern post-war Brutalism.
Benjamin Green, a visual artist specialising in lens-based practice produced a multi-channel video installation entitled ‘Beth Nawr?/Who Cares?’. Having grown up in the North Midlands, a region with a rich industrial history in transport manufacture, textiles, and coal mining, Benjamin finds great interest in creating work focused on socio-political issues. Often, these issues relate to post-industrial landscapes and communities, which is where he combines sociological theory with visual exploration. He comments, ‘this project looks at a town in Wales, due to the history of working-class struggle against large, external powers’.
Benjamin had the aim to explore the uncertain physical and political landscape surrounding the Welsh port town of Holyhead, which is at risk of losing massive levels of employment due to the Brexit decision. By highlighting the real impact of sensationalist politics on the UK’s working-class communities, he was able to show how the genuine risks, overshadowed by personality politics and dramatic headlines, as a result of the decision for Britain to leave the European Union. He also matched the videos with a soundtrack sung, by a Welsh miners choir, in homage to the region's history of political struggle.
Concerned with sociological issues, James Wrigley created Contested Territories, a non-profit biannual publication. For him, this was more than just an exhibition. By having no commercial focus or obligations James hopes that this project will join the path that sets different parameters for creative conversations between publications and contributors. Contested Territories is printed with the intention to move in unpredictable ways. Challening the meaning of ephemra, that it naturally moves through viewers and territories, to challenge accessibility, whether that is to strategically place on trains, busses, or other public transport, cafes, benches, parks, workplaces and staff room tables. Open this journal on a particular page and leave it in a public space. Whichever scenario this publication finds itself in James intends for it to be inclusive, to be meaningful and useful, and create relationships with the topics and themes featured.