Auditorium (1994) Courtesy The Estate of Ian Breakwell and LUX, London
Lynda Morris: Working with Ian: Nottingham, St. John Street, Norwich
Lynda Morris curated the Diary Pages exhibition at the Midland Group in Nottingham in 1976 and worked with Ian again at the Norwich Gallery in the 1980s on a suite of prints of Diary Pages.
A selection of films by Ian Breakwell
Introduced by Felicity Sparrow and Ron Geesin. Ron Geesin is a composer who now lives locally. Ron collaborated with Ian on his film Auditorium but is best known for his collaboration and orchestration with Pink Floyd on “Atom Heart Mother” (1970)
One (1971– 2003), Nine Jokes (1971), Repertory (1973), The News (1980), Auditorium (1994), Variety (2001)
16mm, b&w, sound, 15’00”
Made with Mike Leggett, digitally reconstructed in 2003
Based on the performance at the Angela Flowers Gallery, a group of labourers shovelled earth over the course of an ‘8-hour-day’. Each man continuously shovelled earth onto the adjacent man’s mound of earth, while at the same time the Apollo astronauts were digging up rock samples on the surface of the moon. It was transmitted via CCTV to the street-level window and the pictures became almost indistinguishable from the activities on the moon.
Nine Jokes (1971)
16mm, b&w, silent, 12’00”
It is a series of very short disconnected episodes preceded by an intertitle in which very simple actions are portrayed on screen with a fixed camera.
16mm, colour, sound, 9’00”
The visuals consist of one continuous tracking shot, during which the camera completely circles the exterior of a locked and empty theatre, recording its walls, doors and blank hoardings and catching fleeting glimpses of passers by. On the soundtrack, a voice describes a three-week cycle of imagined presentations inside the theatre; wittily absurd and fantastic.
The News (1980)
Video, colour, sound, 11’00”
It features a televsion newsreader who recounts the minutiae of small-town life with due solemnity, but reveals a disturbing element of anarchic behaviour amongst the town’s old age pensioners.
Video, colour, sound, 32’00”
Collaboration with Ron Geesin
Breakwell made this film with a hypothesis that in dynamic live theatre the audience becomes part of a two-way performance, radiating an equivalent range of emotional expression to that emanating from the stage. The film records 'performing audience' but without the acts they are reacting to.
Video, colour, sound 19’00”
It forms part of a videotape Breakwell made during his residency at the Pavilion in 2000, inspired by research undertaken at the British Film Institute archive. Consisting of 12 self-contained ‘acts’ in the manner of a variety theatre bill, Variety is a tribute to the theatre of vaudeville, burlesque, cabaret, pantomime, circus, fairgrounds, stage magic and illusions.
All works: The Estate of Ian Breakwell, Courtesy LUX
Tickets: Talk £5, Films £5, Combined ticket £8