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December 22, 2016

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Showcase of Scottish moving images

“CURRENT: Contemporary Art from Scotland (Phase Two)” is on display at Shanghai Minsheng Art Museum.

Curated by Cooper Gallery DJCAD (Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design) at University of Dundee in collaboration with Shanghai Minsheng Art Museum and organized in partnership with the British Council and Shanghai International Culture Association, the show consists of two group exhibitions: “REWIND: British Video Art in the 70s and 80s” and “FFWD: Artists’ Moving Image from Scotland.”

The exhibition focuses on the history and development of moving image works to explore the distinctiveness of contemporary art made in Scotland; its grass-roots spirit and its keen debates with the social and political dimensions of the art and culture.

Excavating the radical history encapsulated in seminal artists’ video works from the 1970s and 80s, “REWIND” provides an in-depth perspective on the moving image in and out of history. “FFWD” seizes the contemporary in its full immediacy and impact.

A highlight of “REWIND” is a video titled “Doppelganger,” created by Elaine Shemilt. Shemilt manipulates her body and her image to create a double of herself in this video performance. The piece begins with a close up of her face. The mirror reflects her applying make-up with precise gestures. Two sound tracks can be heard: they are recordings of two psychological analyses of schizophrenia, evoking a split personality. The performance is suddenly interrupted by another image, showing the face of the artist. At the end of the performance, other images of the artist’s body and face are overlapped with other bodies and faces.

A highlight in the “FFWD” section is Duncan Marquiss’ “Midday,” created in 2011. The work features footage of the artist’s hand passing under a shadow cast by a grass screen. The movement of the hand through the repeating lines of shade plays on the viewer’s perception of depth, and the tendency to look for familiar forms within disorienting patterns. The affect of the work is to collapse the depth of the film-frame into a flattened, flickering moire.


Date: Through January 15, 10am-6pm, Tuesday-Sunday

Venue: Shanghai Minsheng Art Museum

Address: Bldg F, 570 Huaihai Rd W.


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