Iain Forsyth and Jane Pollard met and began collaborating at Goldsmiths in 1993. Since then their films and videos have looked at contemporary life and culture, exploring re-enactment as an artistic genre. Their work is always less about the past than of the present, pulling their own generation into sharp focus. For their recent major film project, File under Sacred Music, Forsyth and Pollard recreated an infamous bootleg video of The Cramps performing for the patients at Napa State mental institute, California in 1978. The event was re-enacted at the ICA in London, with the resulting footage meticulously edited and degraded to match the content, spirit and damaged aesthetic of the original bootleg video tape. Their practice recapitulates Duchamps challenge to the authored one-off and pushes beyond any simple re-presentation of culturally significant moments to project an alternate testament of reality.
For this exhibition, Forsyth and Pollard will present ‘Walking After Acconci (Redirected Approaches)’. This new film references a seminal video work made in 1973 by performance artist Vito Acconci. In it, Acconci paces the length of a corridor, talking to an absent ex-lover. Forsyth and Pollard have worked closely with Plan B (679 Recordings), a sharp-tongued young MC, to update the script and re-shoot the video, liberally adopting the style and aesthetic of contemporary urban music videos. The resulting film is a combination of reconstruction and revision, a double-take, a superimposition paralleling two eras, two forms of cultural expression and two dialogues – the dialogue with the Acconci piece and the dialogue with the camera, the viewer, you.
Iain Forsyth born Manchester 1973, Jane Pollard born Newcastle 1972, both live and work in London.
Selected exhibitions: Rhythm-A-Ning, Walton’s New Music School, Dublin, April 2005, VIPER Festival, Basel 2004, Everybody Else is Wrong, Pavilion, Montreal, Canada 2004, File Under Sacred Music, ICA London 2003, Century City, Tate Modern, London, 2001, A Rock ‘n’ Roll Suicide, ICA, London 1998, Becks New Contemporaries, Cornerhouse, Camden Arts Centre and CCA, 1997